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Ex-weekly editor nominated for crime fiction prize

An editor who quit a weekly newspaper to concentrate on his writing career has been nominated for a crime fiction prize.

Douglas Skelton has been nominated for the McIlvanney Prize for his novel Open Wounds, just over a year-and-a-half since leaving the Cumnock Chronicle.

The book follows the fortunes of lovable rogue Davie McCall, a Glasgow hardman with a heart.

The prize is named in honour of novelist William McIlvanney, who died in December.

Douglas Skelton

Said Douglas, pictured above, of Davie McCall: “Not everything in crime is cut and dried. For some criminals there is a vulnerability there.

“I wanted to create a character who is realistic, who would hurt you in the blink of an eye and not think about it, but the thing with Davie is he does think about it and he wants out of ‘the life’.

“He’s had enough but he finds himself being sucked in time and again. He’s a good man walking in a bad man’s skin.”

Other nominees for the prize include Ian Rankin and Val McDermid.

The winner will be announced at the Bloody Scotland crime literature festival on 9 September.