NICOLA Sturgeon is firing the starting gun on a fresh independence drive – setting out the need to decide Scotland’s future now and the benefits constitutional debate can bring.

The comments come in an essay written by the First Minister published exclusively in this weekend’s Sunday National.

In the piece, she discusses plans for an updated prospectus for an independent Scotland and why the nation is better placed now than it ever has been to seize the potential offered by a Yes vote.

Sturgeon writes: “With this new independence discussion, we will be raising Scotland’s ambition. Too often, political debate in Scotland seems dominated by how we mitigate the damage inflicted upon us by Westminster, when in fact we should be deciding how we manage and develop our extraordinary assets to build a better nation.”

The full essay will be printed in tomorrow’s Sunday National.

Elsewhere, the cover story of the Seven Days broadsheet pull-out sees Sustainable Growth Commission report chair Andrew Wilson looking back at its genesis and relevance to indyref2, four years on from its publication.

National editor Callum Baird said: “Tomorrow’s paper, put together by Sunday National editor Roxanne Sorooshian and our team, is – as always – a cracking read.

“The First Minister’s essay is a must-read for the independence movement and beyond, so it’s a can’t-miss edition.

“You’ll also be able to enjoy contributions from the likes of David Pratt, Ruth Wishart and The Ferret on top of that exclusive!

“Keep an eye out on social media to see our front page tonight.”