Original price was: $14.95.Current price is: $12.00.

Edited by 

Alice Osborn

260 pages, cover price $14.95

($12 if ordered from the MSR Online Bookstore)

ISBN: 978-1-59948-380-1

Release date: 2012


ABergman_Px_bAndrew Marlowe Bergman, Bowling Green, KY
Andrew Marlowe Bergman is a recent graduate of Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, Kentucky, where he puts his bachelor’s degree to work cutting fruit at a grocery store.




L.C. Fiore, Durham, NC
L.C. Fiore is the author of the novel Green Gospel (Livingston Press, 2011). He has published stories in Folio,MAKE Magazine¸ Michigan Quarterly Review, Wascana Review, and the anthology Sudden Flash Youth: 65 Short Short Stories, among others. An award-winning short-story writer and editor, his work has also appeared on NPR, TriQuarterly Review, and in various baseball publications. He and his wife live in Durham, North Carolina, where he is the communications coordinator for the North Carolina Writers’ Network. His website is




Gina Hanson
Gina Hanson earned her MFA in Fiction Writing at California State University, San Bernardino. Other short stories of hers have appeared in The Ink-Filled Page, Red Clay Review, and ZYZZYVA. Her work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She currently lives in Southern California with her spouse and a menagerie of poorly behaved animals.



Margaret Karmazin
Margaret Karmazin’s credits include 130 stories published in literary and national magazines, including Rosebud,Chrysalis Reader, North Atlantic Review, Potomac Review, Confrontation, Mobius, Absent Willow Review,Pennsylvania Review and Wild Violet. Her stories in The MacGuffin, Eureka Literary Magazine, Licking River Review and Words of Wisdom were nominated for Pushcart awards and Piper’s Ash, Ltd. published a chapbook of her sci-fi, Cosmic Women. Her story, “The Manly Thing,” was nominated for the 2010 Million Writers Award. She helped write the introduction for and has a story included in Still Going Strong, stories in Ten Twisted Tales,Pieces of Eight (Autism Acceptance), Zero Gravity, Cover of Darkness and Circling Uranus and a novel,Replacing Fiona, published by


David W. Landrum
David W. Landrum teaches English at Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Michigan. His fiction has appeared in such journals as Dark Sky, decomP, 34th Parallel, Roar and Thunder, Oysters& Chocolate, andAoife’s Kiss. His novelette, The Gallery, is available from Amazon.



Nikki Mayeux
Nikki Mayeux teaches creative writing to children and teens at Centre for the Arts in New Roads, Louisiana and is currently pursuing her M.F.A. in Fiction Writing at the University of New Orleans. Her work has been featured in Relief: A Quarterly Christian Expression as well as several university anthologies. When she isn’t obnoxiously taking up tables at local coffee shops to write, Nikki enjoys doing old-lady crafts, taking photographs, and biking around the French Quarter.




Nancy McKinley
Nancy McKinley’s writing appears in Main Street Rag Short Fiction Anthologies: Commutability: Stories About the Journey from Here to There which won her a Pushcart Prize nomination,Coming Home and Big Water; The Cortland Review, Issue 53, Becoming Anthology, and Colorado Review. She teaches in the M.A/.M.F.A. at Wilkes University. She earned her Ph.D. from SUNY-Binghamton, M.A. from Colorado State University, and B.A. from College of the Holy Cross where she was one of the first females at the previously male school.




Laura Leigh Morris
Laura Leigh Morris is a Ph.D. student at Texas A&M University, where she studies English literature and creative writing. “The Tattoo” is part of a collection of stories she is currently drafting. She has previously published fiction in Muse & Stone and Vandal Journal.






Julie Ortiz
Jenny Ortiz is a quite serious 25 year old New Yorker, except when unicorns (specifically chubby unicorns) are involved. Currently she is teaching at St. John’s University, Adelphi University, and LaGuardia Community College (see, quite serious). When she isn’t teaching, she’s hanging out with her friends showing off earth and water bending skills (not serious, but super fun). When she is alone and it’s raining, she likes to read Haruki Murakami, or listen to the Broken Bells and daydream. If you want to be a fan, you can read Jenny’s work,, Jersey Devil Press,, Break Water Review, Stone Highway Review, Eighty Percent Magazine and InkSpill Magazine…or you can follow her on Twitter:



Bill Pippin
Author of Wood Hick, Pigs-Ear & Murphy, Bill Pippin spent over twenty years writing reams of advertising copy targeting buyers of chromatography products, and philatelic and numismatic collectibles-though the two species are worlds apart demographically. He now lives in blessed solitude with his wife Zona in the shadow of the Burro Mountains in southwestern New Mexico, where he’s a writing instructor for Long Ridge Writers Group. His short stories, articles, and essays have appeared in The MacGuffin, Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine,Newsweek, Field & Stream, Writer’s Digest, Philadelphia Magazine, Delaware Today, New Mexico Magazine, and many other publications. His memoir in progress, though it’s come a long way, continues to elude satisfactory completion.


Gary V. Powell, Lake Norman, NC
Gary V. Powell’s stories have appeared in The Briar Cliff Review, Amarillo Bay, moonShine Review, The Thomas Wolfe Review, and Dogzplot Flash Fiction. His story “Miller’s Deer” was runner-up for the 2008 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize. Recently, “Trinity’s,” received an Honorable Mention for the Winter 2010 New Millennium Fiction Prize and “Fast Trains” placed in the 2010 Rick Demarinis Fiction Contest. He has work forthcoming at TheMain Street Rag, The Newport Review, and The Blue Lake Review. He lives near the shores of Lake Norman with his beautiful wife and amazing son. His first novel, Lucky Bastard, is also forthcoming this fall from Main Street Rag.



Kathryn Shaver
Kathryn Shaver spent nearly three decades at the helm of the advertising agency she founded. A recent MFA graduate of Spalding University, her first published story won the 2008 Inkwell Fiction Competition. Other stories have appeared in Narrative, Persimmon Tree, Dos Passos Review, The Louisville Courier-Journal, 5×5, and several anthologies. A Kentucky native, she divides her time between Louisville and Savannah, Georgia.




Jo Barbara Taylor, Raleigh, NC
Jo Barbara Taylor lives in Raleigh, North Carolina. Her poems have appeared in Bay Leaves, Ibbetson Street, included in The Sound of Poets Cooking, Exit 109, You Gotta Love ‘Em and Words anthologies, in Bee Culture, on New Verse News and in Broad River Review. She serves as chair of the Brockman-Campbell book award for the North Carolina Poetry Society. Her chapbook One Or Two Feathers was released in fall 2010 by Plan B Press of Alexandria, Virginia; Jake and Jill, the story of a marriage, released summer 2011 by Ridgeline Press, and in fall 2011, Cameo Roles from Big Table Publishing in Newton, Mass.


Lori Van Pelt
Lori Van Pelt’s short western fiction won a Spur Award in 2006 from the Western Writers of America for the title story in her collection, Pecker’s Revenge and Other Stories from the Frontier’s Edge (University of New Mexico Press). Her short stories have appeared in numerous national anthologies, most recently How the West Was Wicked and Another Wild West, both published by Pill Hill Press. Her biography Amelia Earhart: The Sky’s No Limit (American Heroes series, Forge) was named to the New York Public Library’s “Best Books for the Teen Age 2006” list. The author of two nonfiction books on Wyoming’s colorful historical characters, Lori is currently the assistant editor for




Susan Volchok
Susan Volchok is a New York writer who has published widely in journals and anthologies, ranging from The Massachusetts Review, The Virginia Quarterly Review, The Kenyon Review to Best American Erotica, in mainstream magazines and newspapers, including the New York Times, and online, most recently @ n+1 and Mr. Beller’s Neighborhood. A longtime fascination with tattoos meant years of collecting books and ideas on the subject before she commissioned a substantial piece of her own. Her website, New York Walks and Writing—reflecting the fact that Susan is a licensed, working NYC guide as well as an urban writer—is at


About the Editor


Alice Osborn, Raleigh, NC
Alice Osborn, M.A. is the author of three books of poetry, Unfinished Projects (Main Street Rag, 2010), Right Lane Ends (Catawba, 2006) and most recently After the Steaming Stops (Main Street Rag, 2012); she is a freelance writer, blogger and teaching artist. A former high school English teacher, Alice teaches creative writing in schools and organizations where she uses sensory images and road-tested prompts to stimulate her students’ best work. Her writing has appeared in Raleigh’s News and Observer, Soundings Review, The Pedestal Magazine, and in numerous journals and anthologies. She lives in Raleigh, North Carolina, with her husband and two children. Visit her website:

If you would like to read Tattoos, order your copy today.


Hang out at any airport, pool or gym these days and you’ll find more people wearing tattoos than not. When did tattoos become mainstream so that by not having ink you’re an oddity? Perhaps because of the turbulent economic and political landscape we live in, people want to have some control in their lives-tattoos provide that control. Throughout history tattoos let others know the wearer’s totem, family, skill set or class. Not just for sailors or misfits, people of all ages now get tattoos because they want to heal after abuse, they reach a personal milestone or they survive a health scare. Or they just want one.

Like the characters in this story collection who are searching for themselves while committed to the ink, the tattooed can express their individualism, their pain and their memories on their skin.

I’ve always been fascinated with tattoos but not because I have one. There’s something in a tattoo that tells the world to fuck off. I admire that. A tattoo is pure communication in the outlines of barbed wire, dragon or butterfly. Of course a character who sports a tattoo has a story. Who hurt her? What did he lose? Why did she choose that tattoo? What does he want to find? What’s her secret?

In this anthology, sometimes the tattoo is central to the plot, and other times merely tangential to these characters. You’ll meet men and women haunted by war, by family and by themselves. They want to belong and to believe in something. And they are as different as the designs on their arms, legs and backs.

Enjoy these stories told by 15 talented authors from across the country. See yourself in their characters and in their ink. In some way, we are all misfits according to someone.


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