BOOKER Prize winning author Douglas Stuart has said he “owes Scotland everything” after receiving the prestigious award.

The 44-year-old was announced as the winner of the Man Booker this week for his debut novel Shuggie Bain, which is based on his own childhood.

The book is set in 1980s Glasgow and explores poverty, tough upbringings and alcoholism.

Stuart is the second Scottish writer in history to win the award since it was established in 1969, with James Kelman taking the prize for How Late It Was, How Late in 1994.

READ MORE: Scottish writer's 'life-changing' first novel takes home 2020 Man Booker prize

After receiving the prize at the virtual ceremony – which featured contributions from former US president Barack Obama and the Duchess of Rothesay – Stuart said: “I know I'm only the second Scottish book in 50 years to have won and that means, I think, a lot for regional voices, for working-class stories, so thank you.”

In an interview with The Guardian, Stuart, who now works in fashion in the US, said: “I owe Scotland everything.”

He said he credits the system with giving him a better life, adding “there was a social fabric, a social net” when he needed it as a teenager.

He explained he was grateful to have had access to education unlike older men in his life who were “tossed aside by the trades they had put their faith in”.

In a quick-fire interview with The Times today, Stuart also confirmed that he supports independence when asked which he would choose out of independence or devolution.  

The chair of the Man Booker judging panel called Stuart’s novel “daring, frightening and life-changing” as the winner was revealed this week.

Margaret Busby said: "The heart-wrenching story tells of the unconditional love between Agnes Bain - set on a descent into alcoholism by the tough circumstances life has dealt her - and her youngest son.

"Shuggie struggles with responsibilities beyond his years to save his mother from herself, at the same time as dealing with burgeoning feelings and questions about his own otherness.

"Gracefully and powerfully written, this is a novel that has impact because of its many emotional registers and its compassionately realised characters.

"The poetry in Douglas Stuart's descriptions and the precision of his observations stand out: nothing is wasted."