About Michael Conley

Michael Conley is a writer from Manchester and the author of Flare and Falter. His poetry has appeared in various literary magazines, and has been Highly Commended in the Forward Prize. He has published two pamphlets: Aquarium, with Flarestack Poets, and More Weight, with Eyewear. His prose work has taken third place in the Bridport Prize and was shortlisted for the Manchester Fiction Prize. He tweets @mickconley.
 

The Village Where Everyone Keeps Punching Themselves in the Mouth

Categories: Fiction
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The guys in the office laughed when you were assigned this one. You’ll know them by their scabbed knuckles, they said, by their clawed right hands cradled always at chest level like twitching beach-rescued starfish.

 

Pinniped

Categories: Fiction
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We know they must smell like the dustbins behind a seafood restaurant, although we can’t smell them from here. They look as cold and alien to the touch as the part of your leg that finds its way out from under the bedclothes in winter.

 

The God Quetzalcoatl Has Retired and Now Runs a Pub in South Manchester

Categories: Fiction
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He likes this new work: granting, recurrently, the single recurring prayer of the drunk; the way the sallow light drags ruby through the bottom of a pint of stout.

 

When It Starts

Categories: Fiction
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It starts in a mid-sized former mining town in Yorkshire. No explanation for it. No marks on the bodies. No history of such things.

 

Marked

Categories: Fiction
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One night, Alphabet fell from the sky. It began with uppercase Y’s spinning earthwards past our bedroom windows like giant maple seeds.

 

Anatidaephobia

Categories: Fiction
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He wakes to an echoing quack. In the bathroom mirror, behind his shoulder, a duck roosts on the shower rail. When he turns around, it’s not there.