Short Fiction

I have read reports that many people are finding they no longer have the attention span to read an entire novel. No problem. Start with short fiction. These are stories that can be read anywhere from about two hours to less than five minutes. The challenge can be where to find them. This page is my contribution to solving that problem. Be sure to check out the tools section at the bottom for how to save these stories to read later  without an internet connection.

My Favorite Short Stories

This is where I share the short stories, novelettes, and novellas that I have read and rated as five stars (out of five). All of these are available to read online for free. Most of the titles below are speculative fiction (science fiction, fantasy, horror) as that is my area of focus. They are sorted by publication date with the most recent at the top. To estimate how long it will take to read each story, the average adult reading speed of between 220 and 350 words per minute.

Science Fiction/Fantasy

Title Author Source Published Word Count URL
The Many Taste Grooves of the Chang Family Allison King LeVar Burton Reads November 07, 2023 3975
We Will Witness Martin Cahill The Sunday Morning Transport October 22, 2023 3440
Through Dreams She Moves Tonya Liburd Apex September 01, 2023 5600
Junebug Sarah Hollowell Apex September 01, 2023 6700
The Curing Kristina Ten Uncanny September 01, 2023 8049
Can You Hear Me Now? Catherynne M. Valente Uncanny September 01, 2023 5908
The Court Magician Sarah Pinsker LeVar Burton Reads October 10, 2023 4000
Simmered in Their Wealth Like the Richest of Sauces Jo Miles Lightspeed September 01, 2023 1568
The Hole in the Garden Gene Doucette Lightspeed September 01, 2023 4353
Upgrade Day RJ Taylor Clarkesworld September 01, 2023 2080
A Guide to Matchmaking on Station 9 Nika Murphy Clarkesworld September 01, 2023 4020
Alphabet of Swans E. Lily Yu The Sunday Morning Transport August 27, 2023 2190
Have You Seen Bitsy? James Van Pelt Asimov’s June 08, 2023 short story
The Greeter Rick Wilber
Lisa Lanser Rose
Asimov’s June 08, 2023 short story
Hope Is the Thing With Feathers Karawynn Long Asimov’s July 01, 2023 short story
Showdown on Planetoid Pencrux Garth Nix Asimov’s June 08, 2023 novelette
Echoes of Aurora Ellen Klages The Sunday Morning Transport August 20, 2023 3950
The Letters They Left Behind Scott Edelman Lightspeed August 01, 2023 7461
The Ghasts Lavie Tidhar Uncanny July 01, 2023 4932
The Music of the Siphorophenes C.L. Polk Uncanny July 01, 2023 9232
SuperMAX Daniel H. Wilson Uncanny July 01, 2023 7914
Tantie Merle and the Farmhand 4200 R.S.A. Garcia Uncanny July 01, 2023 6861
Muna in Barish Isha Karki Lightspeed July 01, 2023 7971
Starpoop Sandra McDonald Lightspeed July 01, 2023 3244
The United Systems of Goodwill Concert Series and the Greatest Performance of All Time James Van Pelt Lightspeed July 01, 2023 1258
Death Is Better Oluwatomiwa Ajeigbe Lightspeed July 01, 2023 1471
Tigers for Sale Risa Wolf Clarkesworld July 01, 2023 6560
Timelock Davian Aw Clarkesworld July 01, 2023 5620
Cheaper to Replace Marie Vibbert Clarkesworld July 01, 2023 3370
Death and Redemption, Somewhere Near Tuba City Lou J. Berger Clarkesworld July 01, 2023 5470
Blowout Wole Talabi Analog July 01, 2023 short story
Recruit Stephen L. Burns Analog July 01, 2023 novelette
Skin Job Gregor Hartmann Analog July 01, 2023 short story
The Carina Nebula Kelsey Hutton Analog July 01, 2023 short story
A Synthetic’s Field Guide on Speed Dating and Birds Rhan Hunke Analog July 01, 2023 short story
First Words Michael Randle Analog July 01, 2023 short stories
The Jangler Wil McCarthy Analog July 01, 2023 novelette
‘Ain’t Houses, Ain’t Names’ Nino Cipri The Sunday Morning Transport July 16, 2023 3340
This Is Not a Wardrobe Door Merc Fenn Wolfmoor PodCastle July 04, 2023 1772
Boomerang Bill Johnson
Gregory Frost
Asimov’s May 01, 2023 short story
The Unveiling Christopher Rowe StarShipSofa June 28, 2023 4500
Games Without Frontiers Andy Dudak Asimov’s May 01, 2023 novelette
In the Stacks Scott Lynch PodCastle June 20, 2023 13500
Saving Galileo Sean McMullen Analog May 01, 2023 short story
Hail and Farewell Joel Richards Analog May 01, 2023 short story
One For Sorrow Richard Gregson Analog May 01, 2023 short story
Vast and Trunkless Legs of Stone Carrie Vaughn Clarkesworld June 01, 2023 5570
And All the Fields Below Sarah Grey Lightspeed June 01, 2023 2625
Wanderlust LP Kindred Escape Pod June 01, 2023 3788
(emet) Lauren Ring PodCastle May 30, 2023 7470
The Relationship of Ink to Blood Alex Langer Apex May 01, 2023 4700
Want Itself Is a Treasure in Heaven Theodora Ward Uncanny May 01, 2023 5477
The Mausoleum’s Children Aliette de Bodard Uncanny May 01, 2023 5411
The Belfry Keeper S.L. Harris Lightspeed May 01, 2023 845
Saturday’s Song Wole Talabi Lightspeed May 01, 2023 8677
Blood for a Stranger Timothy Mudie Lightspeed May 01, 2023 9434
She Blooms and the World is Changed Izzy Wasserstein Lightspeed May 01, 2023 2337
To Sail Beyond the Botnet Suzanne Palmer Clarkesworld May 01, 2023 21920
Better Living Through Algorithms Naomi Kritzer Clarkesworld May 01, 2023 5610
Wanton Gods Sheila Finch Asimov’s March 01, 2023 short story
The Repair Mark D. Jacobsen Asimov’s March 01, 2023 short story
Night Running Greg Egan Asimov’s March 01, 2023 novelette
The Nameless Dead Kristine Kathryn Rusch Asimov’s March 01, 2023 novelette
The Toll of the Snake Grace P. Fong Apex April 01, 2023 4900
Youth Isaac Asimov Space Science Fiction May 01, 1952 9485
Immune Response Robert R. Chase Analog March 01, 2023 novelette
The House on Infinity Street Allen M. Steele Analog March 01, 2023 novelette
An Inconvenient Man Adam-Troy Castro Analog March 01, 2023 short story
Every Shade of Healing Taryn Frazier Apex March 01, 2023 1000
They Could Have Been Yours Joy Baglio Apex March 01, 2023 6900
Over Moonlit Clouds Coda Augeuy-Pegon Apex March 01, 2023 6900
To Build a Fire Jack London Century August 01, 1908 7042
The Yellow Wallpaper Charlotte Perkins Gilman New England January 01, 1892 5815
The Spoil Heap Fiona Moore Clarkesworld March 01, 2023 6640
Pinocchio Photography Angela Liu Clarkesworld March 01, 2023 6450
Blank Space Delilah S. Dawson Uncanny March 01, 2023 4745
An Ode to Stardust R.P. Sand Clarkesworld February 01, 2023 14616
Silo, Sweet Silo James Castles Clarkesworld February 01, 2023 4397
Learning Letters Carrie Vaughn Lightspeed February 01, 2023 4384
A Small, Good Thing Raymond Carver Cathedral September 15, 1983 short story
The Father Provincial of Mare Imbrium E. Lily Yu Uncanny January 01, 2023 3545
Waystation City A.T. Greenblatt Uncanny January 01, 2023 4274
Cold Relations Mary Robinette Kowal Uncanny January 01, 2023 7980
Braid Me a Howling Tongue Maria Dong Lightspeed January 01, 2023 9909
A Man Walks Into a Bar; or, In Which More Than Four Decades After My Father’s Reluctant Night of Darts on West 54th Street, I Finally Understand What Needs to Be Done Scott Edelman Lightspeed January 01, 2023 5977
The Narrative Implications of Your Untimely Death Isabel J. Kim Lightspeed January 01, 2023 5122
The Last Serving Lincoln Michel Lightspeed January 01, 2023 1006
Message in a Vessel V.G. Harrison Apex January 01, 2023 4900
Your Rover Is Here LP Kindred Apex January 01, 2023 3500

Classic/Literary Fiction

Short Fiction on the Internet



Tools to Save and Read Later