15 Free Sci-Fi Short Stories

Sci Fi Month (text only banner. The text is full of stars). Banner by Rinn of Rinn Reads.

As part of Sci-Fi Month, I decided to share some of my favorite science fiction short stories. These all come from my periodic round ups of free SFF short stories available for free online, so they’re all easy to access and read. The stories are organized alphabetically by author, not how much I like them. They’re all amazing stories, and I hope you find some you enjoy!

“Making the Magic Lightening Strike Me” by John Chu

Charlie’s taken a job with a secret organization that’s altered his body, making him taller and more muscular. But even with these changes, Charlie doesn’t feel happy with himself.

“The Shape of My Name” by Nino Cipri

The protagonist learns about his family’s secret, time travel, and he also learns about himself and his own identity.

“The Illustrated Biography of Lord Grimm” by Daryl Gregory

What compels someone to put on a mask and become a supervillain? This story provides an answer.

“Last Chance” by Nicole Kornher-Stace

Aneko’s the daughter of the king’s torturer, until her mother’s killed by scav raiders and Aneko’s taken as a slave. “Last Chance” is a post-apocalyptic story with a strong Mad Max vibe.

“Cat Pictures Please” by Naomi Kritzer

On a lighter note, “Cat Pictures Please” is the story of a cat loving AI who becomes sentient.

“Dragonflies” by Seanan McGuire

In this post-apocalyptic tale, humans are no longer the apex predator. Earth has been over taken by gargantuan insects, grown super sized in an oxygen abundant atmosphere.

“All That Touches the Air” by An Owomoyela

Humans share the planet with sentient bacteria. If humans venture beyond their dome, the bacteria are free to claim their bodies.

“And Then There Were (N-One)” by Sarah Pinsker

In this high concept story, Sarah Pinsker is invited to a conference of other Sarah Pinskers, all from different alternate realities.

“Fandom for Robots” by Vina Jie-Min Prasad

Computron ideals away his days in a robotics museum. Then, he discovers fandom.

“Welcome to Your Authentic Indian Experience™” by Rebecca Roanhorse

Jesse works at a virtual reality company that provides white tourists with “authentic Indian experiences.”

“Later, Let’s Tear Up the Inner Sanctum” by A. Merc Rustad

This super powered tale questions the nature of heroes and the role of villains.

“Nothing Is Pixels Here” by K.M. Szpara

Ash has lived in a virtual reality since he was a small child, but now he’s contemplating unplugging and joining the “real” world.

“Seven Cups of Coffee” by A.C. Wise

A woman is hired by a stranger to go back in time and make sure that someone is never born. But soon she regrets the action she took and searches desperately for some way to prevent it.

“Secondhand Bodies” by JY Yang

Agatha wants a body that doesn’t gain fat the way her current one does. Her cousin Aloysius says he can hook her up with the newest body creating technology, but she has to agree to sell her current one on the black market.

“Welcome to the Medical Clinic at the Interplanetary Relay Station” by Caroline M. Yoachim

Basically, if Catch-22 was a science fiction short story’s told in a choose your own adventure format, it’d be “Welcome to the Medical Clinic at the Interplanetary Relay Station.”

What are some of your favorite science fiction short stories?


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