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William McIllvanney
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William McIllvanney

William McIlvanney (born 1936) is a Scottish novelist. He was born in the town of Kilmarnock, the son of a miner. He graduated from Glasgow University and worked as an English teacher between 1960 and 1975. His first book, Remedy is None, was published in 1966 and won the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize. Docherty (1975), a moving portrait of a miner whose courage and endurance is tested during the depression, won the Whitbread Novel Award. The Big Man (1985), is the story of Dan Scoular, an unemployed man who turns to bare-knuckle fighting to make a living. Both novels feature typical McIlvanney characters - tough, often violent, men locked in a struggle with their own nature and background. His most recent novel, The Kiln (1996), is the story of Tam Docherty, the grandson of the hero of Docherty. It won the Saltire Society Scottish Book of the Year Award. The Big Man (1985) was made into a film starring Liam Neeson and featuring Billy Connolly. Laidlaw (1977) and The Papers of Tony Veitch (1983) are both crime novels.

William McIlvanney is also an acclaimed poet, and is the author of The Longships in Harbour: Poems (1970) and Surviving the Shipwreck (1991), which also contains pieces of journalism, including an essay about T. S. Eliot. His short story "Dreaming" (published in Walking Wounded in 1989) was filmed by BBC Scotland in 1990 and won a BAFTA. His brother is the sports journalist Hugh McIlvanney.

Prizes and Awards

{Taken from the British Council}|

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