Archie Hind was the winner of the 1966 Guardian Prize for First Novel for his first – and only – complete novel, The Dear Green Place. The award was only one of four it won, and The Dear Green Place has been voted as one of the 100 best Scottish novels of all time. The story features Mat Craig, a would-be-author determined to write the best novel about Glasgow.
Hind was born in Carntyne in Glasgow in 1928, and served in the medical corps in Singapore during the Second World War. His education was sporadic – he had to work to support his alcoholic father – but in 1950 he attended a creative writing course at Newbattle Abbey College. Although he never completed another novel, Hind wrote several plays and theatrical revues, as well as newspaper articles. He worked as a copytaker for newspapers in Aberdeen and Edinburgh.
Fur Sadie (pronounced as in the German Für), his second novel, was never completed, but has been included in recent Polygon edition of Dear Green…. The manuscript was pieced together by Alasdair Gray and John Linklater. Archie Hind was due to appear at the 2008 Aye Write! festival in Glasgow, but died just two weeks before the start of the festival.
Hind was married for 56 years, and had four children. A fifth child died in a road accident aged just 23.