Capricious Issue 9 – out now!

cover of capricious issue 9 depicting a person sitting by a window holding a succulent in a glass jarWe’re delighted to announce the release of our first special issue. Capricious Issue 9 (Gender Diverse Pronouns) has been released into the world and is now available for purchase in both ebook and paperback formats. You can find full details and links at

This issue features short stories by by Nino Cipri, ​Bogi TakácsLauren E. MitchellA.E. Prevost, Cameron Van Sant, Rem Wigmore, Penny StirlingHazel GoldSL Byrne, and Rae White. These are stories of worlds where non-binary people live and love and explore and do magic. Stories of worlds without gender, stories of worlds where gender is conceived differently to our own. Stories of merfolk and dragons and ghosts… and us.

You can purchase Issue 9 in a variety of formats, including paperback. See the issue page for full details and purchase links.

Thank you so much to everyone – including those who supported our crowdfunding campaign – who helped make this happen. We’re so excited to send it out into the world, and hope you love reading it.

Issue 8 is here!

We’re delighted to announce the release of Issue 8. It includes three works of fiction, that will take you from Prague to the world of Faerie, that include themes as diverse as drones, brain implants, dreams, birds, love, and children.There’s also a – highly topical – essay, “This Fantastical World”, in which Joshua Phillip Johnson discusses the role of fiction in not just portraying, but in aiding us in combating, environmental destruction.

You can purchase Issue 8 in .epub, .mobi or .pdf formats. If you like what you see, please consider subscribing.

Gender Diverse Pronouns issue – Table of Contents

We are delighted to announce the stories which will be included in our Gender Diverse Pronouns special issue, due to be released in October. These ten stories (all of which use gender diverse pronouns) are stories of love, fear, transformation, and the journeys we must sometimes take.  Stories of those whose gender changes, whose gender is undecided, whose gender does not exist, and whose gender is pivotal to their self. Stories set in our own world, in far-away galaxies, or in worlds of fairy tale and myth, and stories which introduce us to ghosts, mermaids, dragons, to strangers, to communities, and to ourselves.

  • Ad Astra per Aspera by Nino Cipri
  • Volatile Patterns by Bogi Takács
  • Island, Ocean by Lauren E. Mitchell
  • Sandals Full of Rainwater by A.E. Prevost
  • Phaser by Cameron Van Sant
  • Grow Green by Rem Wigmore
  • Walking the Wall of Papered Peaces by Penny Stirling
  • Incubus by Hazel Gold
  • The Thing with Feathers by SL Byrne
  • Glitter and Leaf Litter by Rae White

We will also be including some interviews and other related content in the issue – more details to come. Thank you to everyone who sent us work; we received more quality work than we could include, but are very pleased with the stories we ended up with – and we’re really looking forward to releasing this issue and giving you the opportunity to read them.

Issue 5 out now! Also submission guidelines…

issue 5 coverWe’re pleased to announce the release of Capricious Issue 5. While technically an unthemed issue this time round, all the works speak to travel in some way, from a journey into the fairy tales of a young woman’s immigrant family’s past, to the impact of time dilation on those taking long journeys through space. This issue features fiction by Jordan Taylor, Julia Warner, and Suzanne J. Willis, along with non-fiction by Ian Kappos, and cover art by Laya Mutton Rogers.

As always, you can purchase the issue direct from this site in .mobi, .epub and .pdf formats. The mobi file will work fine on Kindles, but if you prefer to purchase from Amazon you can do that too.

In other news, our Gender Diverse Pronouns issue is now open for submissions! Check out the guidelines for more information. The issue is dependent on success of our crowdfunding campaign, so please keep sharing that around and consider backing us if you can.

We’re Crowdfunding!

Now Capricious has been up and running for over a year, it’s time to add some new projects into the mix. First up is a very special issue featuring stories with gender diverse pronouns. And we need your help to get there.

Gender diverse pronouns – like ze and hir, or singular they, or any of a number of possibilities – are an increasing part of many people’s vocabulary. They can be used to describe people for whom “he” or “she” are not a good fit, or to refer to a person, actual or hypothetical, of unknown gender.

But – with some notable exceptions – they’re under-utilised in science fiction and fantasy – despite the fact that they’re necessary just to depict our world accurately, let alone the myriad worlds of the imagination. While some editors are welcoming, others are dismissive, meaning authors are taking a risk in writing these stories, and readers don’t see enough of them.

We want to create a special issue of speculative stories which not only use gender diverse pronouns, but embrace them. Stories with gender diverse characters, in worlds where gender is conceptualised in many different ways – or not at all.

We’ve published two such stories: “The Need for Overwhelming Sensation” by Bogi Takács and “Moments of Light” by Toby MacNutt, both of which use multiple sets of gender diverse pronouns – and such pronoun usage is very welcome in every issue of Capricious. Now we want to specifically celebrate it and showcase the possibilities it allows.

In order to produce this special double issue – which will be available in both electronic and print formats – we need your support. Check out our IndieGoGo page where you can choose from a number of perks, including ebooks, print copies, story critiques, and even some fuzzy fuzzhogs.

Whether or not you can support us financially, we’d love it if you could spread the word using the sharing buttons below. And if you’re interested in writing for this issue, we’ll have submission guidelines available from the beginning of November.

Thank you so much for all your support! We’ll keep you updated on our progress as we go.

Happy Birthday Capricious

One year ago today, Capricious Issue 1 was released. On some levels, I knew what I was doing – on others, I had to work things out as I went along. I was nervous and full of self-doubt, and yet confident of the stories I was publishing, and the beautiful cover art.

One year later, here we are. One year, four issues, sixteen short stories, and well over 400 submissions later, here we are. So Happy Birthday Capricious, and thank you to all of you who helped make this happen.

hedgehog at birthday party

That first issue is still available for free download if you’d like to check it out. And Bogi Takács’ story from that issue will shortly be reprinted in Transcendent: the Year’s Best Transgender Speculative Fiction, a book I’m really looking forward to reading.

For the first year, small but steady has been the name of the game – and intentionally so. Even so, we were met with some wobbles (that time I tried to release an issue in the middle of an intensive coding bootcamp) and some surprises (themed issues had been a “maybe one day” plan, and then Issue 2 almost themed itself). Now things are running reasonable smoothly (I say, grabbing everything in the room made from dead tree), Year Two promises a bit more excitement. Phrases such as “special issue”, “crowd funding” and “purple hedgehogs” may be used.

The details are under wraps for now, but here are some things I can tell you:

  • Issue 5 will be released next month. It will include writing from Julia Warner, Jordan Taylor, Suzanne J. Willis, and Ian Kappos, and some stunning (seriously, I am tremendously excited about this) cover art by Laya Mutton Rogers.
  • We will be temporarily closing to submissions at the end of October, reopening in early 2017, so we don’t develop too much of a backlog. Right now we’re particularly looking for stories for our Strange Plants issue, so send us your… no actually, I’m not going to go down the plant puns route because that ended badly last time. Just send us speculative fiction involving plants! We love this stuff!
  • Watch this space around then for an announcement of our new project. There will be hedgehogs.

Thank you all again! It’s nice still being here.


A.C. Buchanan, Editor

Coffee, kueh, sugar sculptures… and human flesh. Issue 4 is here.

Issue 4 CoverWe’re delighted to conclude our inaugural year with Issue 4 of Capricious: an issue themed around food and drink which, as the title of this post suggests, can take some very different forms. With fiction by Jamie Lackey, Mari Ness, Chad Stroup, and Anya Ow, this issue covers the sweet… and the unsavoury.

As always, you can purchase the issue direct from this site in .mobi, .epub and .pdf formats. The mobi file will work fine on Kindles, but if you prefer to purchase from Amazon you can do that too.

Issue 3! Award Nominations! Open to Submissions!

capricious issue 3 coverIssue 3 – our first issue of 2016 – is here. If you’re a subscriber, you’ll have received it by email, otherwise you can purchase for immediate download. We’re delighted to bring you new fiction by Malka Older, Crystal Lynn Hilbert, Lee Murray and RJ Edwards, along with cover art by Vincent Konrad. These stories all have a girl or young woman as the protagonist. There’s plenty of darkness, but also some excitement and exploration. I hope you enjoy reading them.

In other news:

  • We’ve reopened to submissions, with some slightly altered guidelines. We’ll be doing some intentionally-themed issues in the future, so are particularly looking for stories about food and drink, dinosaurs, and strange plants. We’re always open for unthemed submissions, though, so if you have something you think is a great fit we’d love to hear from you.
  • Congratulations to Sean Monaghan whose Issue 1 story “The Harpsichord Elf” is shortlisted for the Sir Julius Vogel awards. Capricious authors are well represented in the shortlist, with Issue 2 author Octavia Cade in the running for the Best New Talent award and Issue 1 author AJ Fitzwater’s non-fiction essay in Letters to Tiptree shortlisted in the Best Professional Production/Publication category. Good luck all of you!

Issue 2 out now!

cover of Capricious issue 2Issue 2 of Capricious, featuring fiction by Octavia Cade, Toby MacNutt, Rebecca Campbell, and Alexander Hardison, and cover art by Belinda Morris, is out now!

The issue has a watery theme, with four very different speculative stories, set in academia and on far away planets, exploring crafts and customs, concerned with belonging and escape, with the power of water, with water as a home, a place of industry and creation, and as a final resting place.

You can purchase Issue 2 in .epub, .mobi or .pdf formats or direct from Amazon for Kindle. If you like what you see, please consider subscribing.


Advance Notice: Temporary Submissions Closure

This is just a quick update to let you know we’ll be closing to fiction submissions from 15 November 2015 until mid-March 2016. We’ve been really pleased, as a new publication, to receive so many submissions – as we can accept only a small number of stories, and have some personal commitments over the summer, taking a break allows us to stay on top of everything and ensure we’re considering submissions in line with our needs.

This is in no way a hiatus for Capricious – work on Issues 2 (December) and 3 (March) is well under way and we’re looking forward to sharing some more original and exciting work with you.

If you’re working on a story you think we might be interested in there’s still time – as always, please carefully read our submissions guidelines before submitting.