Krystal Claxton (she/her) is a lvl 1 Systems Engineer with unfortunate aspirations involving fiction, words, and publishing. She enjoys getting distracted by Dragon Con and The Submission Grinder, and frequently disobeys Heinlein’s Rules.


“Life, hacked” in Frozen Wavelets (TBD)

Short Fiction:

Feint and Flourish

I could tell he really cared about me the night he confessed that he had a third-tier illusion ability that could sometimes become permanent.

No one knew, not even his friends, and not just because he was avoiding the Conference. He was shy about it. About having an ability that wasn’t ever going to save the world. He only ever used his power around me. To make me smile.

900 Seconds of Cognizance and Counting

An emergency subroutine alerts me to low oxygen levels throughout the ship.

“Yes. Right. The humans need oxygen. Uhhhh . . .”

But they installed the Disintegrator. Suppose they replace it? What will that do to my new me-ness? Will I still be alive?

I write a dozen subroutines to weigh the data. The humans are almost certainly going to reinstall a Disintegrator if I help them survive. That will most definitely unmake me.

I could maybe leave them to die? That could be a thing, right?

Presently Me

Future me is being a bitch again.

  • Factor Four (2018) – Buy Issue 1

Life, hacked

The man is and is not a god.

The prayer is not whispered in temple. It is arranged in subatomic particles.

“I want out,” I say through teeth gritted against the stale air of my tiny lab.

He is amused. His teeth are preternaturally white. “That’s an unusual request. Most people want more of ‘in’ if you will — to live forever.”

  • Nature Futures 545, 380 (2017) – Free to read
    • SF2 Concatenation’s Best of Futures (2018) – Free to read
  • Nature Podcast pick (2017)
  • Flash Fiction Online (2018) – Free to read

Planar Ghosts

The walls around the town of Bootstrap are mostly old cars stacked one on top of the other and welded together. Outside Bootstrap, market stalls made from patchwork tarps and rusty pipes lean on either side of the wide gate. They are temporary places for the people who live inside to trade goods with the people stuck outside who need in.

People like Pup.

  • Writers of the Future vol. 31 (2015)
  • Cast of Wonders Staff Pick (2017) – Free to listen
    • Cast of Wonders (2016) – Free to listen in Parts One and Two
  • Wavelengths (2018) – Buy here
  • The New Accelerator (2018) – Subscribe here
  • Imps & Minions (2019) – Buy here


His heartstrings splay from the wound in his chest like delicate red ribbonsDrained of heat and color, his face is lifeless–handsome with amber hair and strong brow, but empty nonetheless. She left him here for dead. 

  • Fantastic Stories of the Imagination (2015)
  • Far Fetched Fables (2016) – Free to listen
  • Hyperion and Theia (2017)

The Newsboy’s Last Stand

She stood up on her tip-toes, extending a slightly wilted white daisy up to Romulus, her whole body pointed and straight in the effort of reaching something that was entirely beyond her reach.

For his part Romulus knelt down and took the flower and gave her a sad smile and watched her run back across the street. And even though he had another line of news, it was sad, so he called it quits for the day and went home. He put the daisy in a jar of water and ate his cake from the bakery (yes, the bakery, not the cakery) and went to sleep.

Bitter Remedy

I’m lousy in broad daylight. I spent my formative years learning from the best in the Conference how to remain hidden. To move with fluidity and silence through a city, like a cloud in the night sky.

Unfortunately it was not night, I was not hidden, and I could not fly.

The Filigreed Cage

The cuff was a gift from the Overseers, one of many they had bestowed upon humanity since the Fail. It provided everyone with instructions and guidance. Her fingers nervously traced the intricate filigree of her own cuff. She remembered her tenth birthday, when she’d been blessed with the title of Wife and Nolan’s name had appeared in delicate scroll.

  • Fireside Magazine (2013) – Free to read
  • Cast of Wonders Podcast (2014) – Free to listen
  • Luna Station Quarterly (2014) – Free to read
  • Fantastic Stories of the Imagination (2015)
  • Digital Fiction Publishing’s Quick Fic (2017)
  • Pioneers & Pathfinders (2019) – Buy from JayHenge Publishing

Sapience and Maternal Instincts

She had my teeth. I hadn’t expected to recognize myself in her, but when she greeted me, her maroon lips parting into a crescent, there they were. My teeth. White, flat, and surprisingly human.

  • Daily Science Fiction (2012) – Free to read
  • Toasted Cake Podcast (2013) – Free to listen
  • Fantastic Stories of the Imagination (2014)
  • Allegory (2015) – Buy Volume 27/54
  • Flash Fiction Online (2015) – Free to read
  • Digital Fiction Publishing’s Quick Fic (2017)