Arula Ratnakar is a neuroscientist, science fiction author, and artist. Her four published stories can be found in Clarkesworld Magazine.

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Arula Ratnakar has the following works available at Clarkesworld:

The Neuroscience of “Babirusa”

NON-FICTION by Arula Ratnakar in Issue 194 – November 2022

Human minds are fascinating machines. They are able to process photons, soundwaves, and various other physical phenomena, turning the information into thought, emotion, and cognition—experience. They take snapshots and store these experiences to reemerge as memories in the presence of a reminder, then use those memories to generate fantastical simulations during dreams—experiences in their own […]


FICTION by Arula Ratnakar in Issue 185 – February 2022

SEARCHING FOR NEURODATA . . . NEURODATA NOT FOUND ERROR: PROGRAM_BABIRUSA STARTING SHUTDOWN OF FUNCTION_GRIND The Untangling Today, Painterman is staring out from the framed acrylic scene on the sixth wall, grinning at us with painted teeth and leaning against the trunk of an oak tree, its leaves and branches rendered in delicate, careful brushstrokes. The paintbrush he […]


FICTION by Arula Ratnakar in Issue 174 – March 2021

As the people began to die, desperation drove us to the depths of the sea for cures. We mined mineral-rich vents until the tube worms went extinct, stripped polymetallic nodule fields bare, squeezed sludge out of sea sponges to treat the new diseases, these monstrous incurable plagues, born from our new climate, that spread through […]

Lone Puppeteer of a Sleeping City

FICTION by Arula Ratnakar in Issue 168 – September 2020

I remember being born. I remember the sensory overload of light and sound and scent, making me cry aloud and take fresh air into my lungs—a new sensation. I remember the weight of gravity, rendering my fragile limbs helpless and clumsy where they had been graceful and nimble in amniotic fluid. Then I remember Mother, […]

Insaan Hain, Farishte Nahin

FICTION by Arula Ratnakar in Issue 152 – May 2019

A stack of pamphlets. A fall to the floor. Then nothing. 6 A spherical object with a four-inch diameter moves through space, a scattering of stars in the background. Switches flip, pieces click into place, and an electric blue light in a chip the size of a pinky nail begins to glow. You wake up. […]
Best Science Fiction of the Year