“Skulls Make Excellent Subjects!” – An Interview with Gerry Carnelly, Tattoo Artist

by Jason Michel

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Gerry Carnelly has built up a reputation as one of Britain’s most hardworking tattoo artists. His shop is Octopus Tattoo in Derby in The Midlands. He is not only a top Tattooist but a damn fine visual artist to boot with a complete dedication to his work.  I had a wee chat with him.

Q1: Hey Gerry!

Tell these ignorant curs something about Gerry Carnelly.

When did you realise that you wanted to happily inflict pain onto a paying public & become a tattooist?

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The Bravo Dome by Jane Hammons

He giggles. Removes her oxygen. She thinks he’s replacing it. What really tickles him is that she’s sitting in her wheelchair out in the Kiowa Grasslands on top of the biggest field of carbon dioxide on the whole planet, choking to death because not even one molecule of oxygen wants anything to do with her.

Bio: Jane Hammons teaches writing at UC Berkeley. She has a 25-word story in Hint Fiction: An Anthology of Stories in 25 Words or Fewer (W. W. Norton 2010). Her crime fiction has been recently published in Crimespree Magazine and A Twist of Noir.

The Rise and Fall of the Sockdolagers by Michael Frissore


It all started with a birthday gift my ex-girlfriend gave me. She knew I wanted to get into puppetry, but didn’t understand I meant the marionette kind, like in Being John Malkovich. She actually made me a dozen sock puppets. It was sweet, but I found this type of puppetry to be a bit hack. Still, there was something strange about these things. It didn’t take long. Maybe a couple of days. My friend Josh and I were talking. That’s when it started.

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Michael and the Final Fix by Tom Sheehan

Michael the orderly was seated on a bench, nodding his head, drawing information from Todd, a patient in the long-term care facility.

“I think Marty Vreeland’s in love with Valerie,” Todd said. “He’s crazy hungry, like before. You can’t knock a guy for that. I can’t.”

Michael nodded. “Everybody has to love somebody around here or go nuts. Valerie’s his anchor.”

Todd thought Michael sounded like a professor, often dispensing good advice in the facility. “There’s a new edge to this,” he said. “They want to play around. French or what, I don’t know, but it has to be handled by someone who’s thoughtful.”

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The Stalker by David Price

Park Model "Swing Carousel" at Dollywood Amusement Park, Pigeon Forge, TN


I use my nail stick to spear a loose piece of paper, a wrapper from some bag of chips. I put it in the canvas sack slung over my shoulder like the kind old-time paperboys once used to carry their papers.

I work this little pocket park everyday at this time. I wear gray work pants and shirt and laced work boots. I fit right in. I also use a weed whacker to trim the grass border of the sand filled kiddies play lot. Sometimes I use my rake to clean debris from the sand. I always leave it smooth like a Zen garden.

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Speaking In Tongues By Michael Keenaghan

After the third knock, Amy’s dad bursts out and lunges for me. “What have I told you about coming here?” he says, his hands gripping my jacket. “What have I fucking told you?”

“Look, I just want to know if Amy’s all right.”

“That’s none of your business any more, is it.” He pushes me down the path. “Now piss off, or I’m warning you.”

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The Myth by Melanie Browne

Anatol Timko was still not comfortable using a wheelchair. Several unsuccessful surgeries had not been able to correct his herniated disc. The doctor had recommended a sustained amount of time spent off his feet. Anatol had reservations about this.

The chair was making him feel claustrophobic and he didn’t like feeling dependent on his girlfriend or mother for everyday tasks. He was also having trouble sleeping. He would

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Sue Walks A Papillon by Sue W

My name is Cassiopeia. I am from the planet Caprica, now destroyed by evil forces. I am part of a rag-tag fleet searching for Earth, our ancient and spiritual home. I’m in unrequited love with a handsome Captain…

And now I am Princess Leia… in a queue at WH Smith. I am the last royalty of a Galaxy from long ago and far away, and I’m impatiently waiting for a Wookie to make his purchase.

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Do it quietly, Smitty by B. R. Stateham

He rolled out of his CTS Caddy and closed the door softly.  Reaching inside his sport coat he pulled out a pair of dark aviator’s sunglasses and slipped them on.  An odd gesture, considering his eyes were as black as a moonless night in Hades itself.  Glancing to his left and then to his right he checked out the pedestrian traffic.
It was a Sunday.  Young mothers were out pushing strollers, paired with other young mothers.  Talking and gesturing Continue reading

The Liberation of Edward Kellor by Anthony David Jacques

The moon is full on the horizon, full and dancing along the top of every gentle wave. Three feet above the low tide mark the rug doesn’t move.

The hands of the watch glide silently over the Greek key pattern in red and gold. The time reads 10:52 am. His silent protest these seven years, but no one ever looked that close. She always made sure he wore the watch because she Continue reading