Dougie’s War is a graphic novel which tells the story of Dougie Campbell, who returns from serving in Afghanistan to his Glasgow home, and deals with the mental war that begins when the physical war ends. Partly funded by Veteran Scotland and dealing with the issue of PTSD, the tale is written by Rodge, with artwork by Dave Turbitt and additional essays by Adrian Searle. Dougie’s War is a hybrid, part-comic, part-homage to the classic Charley’s War (the first comic to deal with what used to be known as ‘shell shock’), and part factual investigation based on months of research with Scottish soldiers who have served all over the world in the past five decades.
The book was published in September 2010 by Freight, an award-winning, independent graphic design and publishing company based in Glasgow, also responsible for Gutter, Scotland’s top literary magazine. It received extensive notices in the broadsheets as well as traditional comic press, with The Spectator saying it “raises questions about the validity of the wars our country is conducting and, particularly, the effect these conflicts have on those involved”. The Sunday Herald said “its attempt to be honest, without being sensational or voyeuristic about the tragedy of war, is a successful and admirable one” and The Big Issue reported that Dougie’s War is “a hard-hitting tale of post traumatic stress syndrome… it hammers home its message without being preachy… as forceful as any conventional novel or non-fiction account”.
DOUGIE’S WAR has been nominated for several prizes. Firstly, Best Graphic Novel at the SICBA Awards 2011. Secondly, at the Scottish Creative Awards 2011, it has been nominated for both Best Publication and Best Illustration, for the work of Dave Turbitt, the artist on the project.
The winners will be announced on October 7th at Edinburgh Corn Exchange. Dougie will also be appearing alongside Pat Mills (2000AD, Judge Dredd, Charley’s War) at Edinburgh International Book Festival on 28th August and at the Internaitonal Festival of Authors in Toronto on October 30th.
Details of Scottish Creative Awards shortlists here.
Find out more about Dougie’s War at www.dougieswar.com
Reviews of Dougie’s War
“…throughout the book Dave Turbitt finds effective ways to illustrate the sheer psychic disruption of PTSD, the sudden intrusion of nightmares into waking life. His most powerful images find a minimal modernism for Joe Colquhoun’s expressionism…”
Scottish Review of Books
“a hard-hitting tale of post traumatic stress syndrome… it hammers home its message without being preachy… as forceful as any conventional novel or non-fiction account”
The Big Issue
“its attempt to be honest, without being sensational or voyeuristic about the tragedy of war, is a successful and admirable one”
“a highly unusual novel with graphics… like the writing, the artwork is excellent”
“…raises questions about the validity of the wars our country is conducting and, particularly, the effect these conflicts have on those involved.”