My guest-blogger today is a man who understands and I can completely get where he’s coming from – Wayne Simmons. He is the very heavily tattooed author of the UK bestselling horror novel, Flu (available now from all good bookstores). His novel, Drop Dead Gorgeous,  is due to be released in February 2011 through Snowbooks.

Here he talks about the very thing we have in common – and no, it’s not about the lack of hair on our heads.


So let’s talk tattoos.

I love them. I love the process of getting a new tattoo. The thinking. The planning. Sourcing a good artist to do the work. Booking the appointment. Showing up on the day, the smell of disinfectant as I walk through the door.  I love all that.

And it’s okay: I love talking about it, too. I won’t roll my eyes if you ask me about my tattoos. I’m proud of them and delighted to show them off, to talk about the artists whose hard work has gone into creating them. Feel free to ask me what they mean – that’s cool – but the answer may surprise you. You see, there’s little deep going on here.  I just think tattoos look cool. My pale, freckle-speckled skin looks better with them than without them. And that’s the height of it, really.

But then there’s my favourite question of all, slurred by some drunken geezer at the local pub. “Here, mate. Great tats. But what’ll you do when you’re eighty, like?”

And my reply? Hopefully get more tattoos. Or maybe I’ll be dead and some sinister collector will be peeling my skin to hang on their wall. Or maybe you and I will be in the fold, mate, staring at afternoon telly. But come bathtime, I’ll be looking a lot more interesting than you, Sunny Jim. Hellloooo, Nurse!

My forthcoming (re)release, Drop Dead Gorgeous, stars a surly tattoo artist. She’s the book’s anti-heroine, a chain-smoking, coke-snorting diva who hates the rest of the world marginally more than she hates herself. But she loves tattoos. The whole world falls dead around her and what does she do?

Run? Hide?


She sits on the floor, next to her fallen client. She fires her kit up. And she finishes the tattoo.

My kind of girl.

So, if you’re reading this and have been thinking about getting your first tattoo, here’s my advice:

Hell yeah! Go for it.


Many thanks to Wayne for writing this… it’ll be a veritable feast of colour when the two of us finally meet – so don’t forget to keep sunglasses handy just in case YOU are at the convention where that meeting happens….

Meet Wayne online at


4 Responses to “Guest-blog: WAYNE SIMMONS”

  1. Its always “what will you do when you’re 80…” Why not 70? What about 90?

    When I’m 80, I’ll look back fondly on the wheres and whys I got my tattoos in the first place.

    I second the “Hell yeah! Go for it!”

  2. Great log, Wayne. One of these days I intend to get a tattoo, but haven’t decided what of. It’ll have to be something special to me. Honestly, it’s nothing to do with fear of pain or me being a wuss. 😉

    Btw, do you know any of Joolz Denby’s work? She’s one of my favourite writers, also a registered tattoo artist.

    Read ‘Flu’ a couple of weeks ago, incidentally, and really enjoyed it. Is there going to be a sequel?

  3. Pahz, I don’t know what it is about the number ’80’ but it seems to be a milestone of regret, doen’t it? ‘Oh my God, I’ve got waaaay too many tattoos!” *cough* *wheeze* Really, I think vanity will be something of a white elephant when I’m that age…

    Simon, thanks again for taking a chance on FLU! Glad you enjoyed it 🙂 There will indeed be a sequel. Several, in fact. More news to follow…

    Never heard of Joolz – what type of stuff does she write? My old mucker, Dan Henk (an outrageously good artist) also writes.

    • Wayne- glad to hear that… I really wanted to find out what happened next!

      Joolz D writes short fiction, poetry and novels- the novels tend to be dark, emotionally intense crime fiction sometimes shading into supernatural horror. ‘Billie Morgan’ is probably her best yet. She also does all the album artwork for New Model Army.

      Here’s one of her stories:

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