Alas, the Hermeneutic Chaos Press Has Closed


The Hermeneutic Chaos Press was created as an extension of the Hermeneutic Chaos Journal, an independent micropress whose founder, publisher, and the editor-in-chief was Shinjini Bhattacharjee. It suddenly closed down in 2018 according to one author whose chapbook had been published by them.
Content is from the site's 2015 - 2017 archived pages provided just a glimpse of what this site offered its authors, customers, and visitors.
Hermeneutic Chaos Press will be missed.


"Love the philosophy of this place! Non-traditional, yet very literate and engaging. One of my favs is Nora Gyengo's poem Lives Among The Ponderous. I completely understand the context of that work having grown up in the suburbs of New Jersey. I've known many of the ponderous, I may even be one since I probably don't appreciate how good my life is. I really identify with the girl who having convinced her husband to buy a pool, then realizes that she really wanted a hot tub. And if I got the hot tub, I'll be bored with it within a week. Now I'm wanting a condo with a better view when I can't even afford a rental. Life among the ponderous is so hard. But the poem makes me realize how reality is never good enough and that's ok." Laura Ring


Welcome to Hermeneutic Chaos Press!

Hermeneutic Chaos Press, a component of Hermeneutic Chaos Literary Journal, is a micro press that publishes poetry and fiction chapbooks and other literary paraphernalia that may excite us. Our tastes are quite eclectic, but we are primarily interested in works that question the sinews of language and everyday experiences, and explore literary spaces outside the normative using innovative imagery. We look for writing that employ imagination to confront the interpretations of an aesthetic that has already found a meaning in society. We want voices that are uncanny, sharp, urgent, startling and resonating. We wish to witness words that grapple with the jouissance of the avant garde.

We do not wish to circumscribe a manuscript's potential by evaluating the literary genre it subscribes to, and therefore, would be happy to accept all literary habitations a chapbook might want to partake, including speculative fiction and fabulism. However, we generally do not prefer philosophical, political and erotic contemplation.

We are also big enthusiasts of collaborative work- between two writers, or a writer and an artist, translations, or any such aesthetic amalgamation thereof, and therefore, greatly encourage such work. 

We will publish not more than five chapbooks every year, and all of them will be printed in small and open editions and bound by hand. We understand the labor, love and care that goes into the composition of each chapbook manuscript, and we promise you that we would give it the same amount of  attention and respect that it deserves.

We respect our authors and take pride in publishing their work, and therefore send out nominations for most of the major prizes and awards. We also try to promote their work wherever possible.

Please read the the submission guidelines carefully before submitting your work to us.

About Us

Established in 2015, Hermeneutic Chaos Press, an extension of Hermeneutic Chaos Journal, is an independent micropress that publishes 7-10 chapbooks per year of poetry, fiction and creative non-fiction. We are a queer-friendly, feminist press that is committed to promoting and celebrating the diversity of literature and its authors. Our mission, right from its inception, has been to publish literature that goes beyond its pages to offer exciting new perspectives that are vital, urgent, and necessary.

Our tastes are quite eclectic, but we are primarily interested in works that question the sinews of language and everyday experiences, and explore literary spaces outside the common using innovative imagery. We look for writing that rehearses imagination to confront the interpretations of an aesthetic that has already found a meaning in society. We acknowledge voices that are bold, uncanny, startling and resonating.  

We do not wish to circumscribe a manuscript's potential by evaluating the literary genre it subscribes to, and therefore, are happy to accept all literary habitations a chapbook might want to assume, including speculative fiction and fabulism. We are also big enthusiasts of collaborative work --between writers, or writer(s) and artist(s), translations, or any such aesthetic amalgamation thereof, and greatly encourage such work. 

All our titles are printed in open or limited editions and bound by hand. Thus, each book becomes a unique work of art, curated with a lot of love. We understand the relationship that the writers have with the work they create, and therefore produce titles that our authors are proud of, and our readers are happy to add to their bookshelves.

We respect our authors and take pride in publishing their work,  and therefore actively promote their voices. We donate generous copies of our titles to university and national libraries. We also nominate our authors for all the major small press prizes and awards. 




Alina Borger (Tuesday's Children

, 2015)writes and teaches in Iowa City, IA. She found a group of beloved fellow writers when she became a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) in 2013, and her novels are now represented by Ammi-Joan Paquette of Erin Murphy Literary Agency. Her poetry has recently appeared in Stirring,The Mom Egg Review, The Pittsburgh Poetry Review, and Rogue Agent, among others. Her poem "The Brass Tacks" won Emerge Literary Journal's 2015 contest, and her series, "A Sex Education in Five Objects" will be part of the Hysteria Anthology in February 2016 with Lucky Bastard Press. When she’s not writing or teaching, she’s curled up with a mug of chamomile tea and a good book or watching her boys play soccer. She tweets publishing news, personal tidbits and miscellany with her students, other writers, and bookish folks @AliBG. You can also connect with her at

Allie Marini (Exquisite Duet

, 2016) holds degrees from Antioch University of Los Angeles & New College of Florida, meaning she can explain deconstructionism, but cannot perform simple math. Her work has been a finalist for Best of the Net & nominated for the Pushcart Prize. She is managing editor for the NonBinary Review, Unbound Octavo, & Zoetic Press, and co-edits for Lucky Bastard Press with her man, performance poet B Deep. She has previously served on the masthead for Lunch Ticket, Spry Literary Journal, The Weekenders Magazine, Mojave River Review& Press, & The Bookshelf Bombshells. Allie is the author of Unmade & Other Poems, (Beautysleep Press), You Might Curse Before You Bless (ELJ Publications) wingless, scorched & beautiful, (Imaginary Friend Press), Before Fire, (ELJ Publications), This Is How We End (Bitterzoet), Pictures From The Center Of The Universe (Paper Nautilus, winner of the Vella Prize), Cliffdiving (Nomadic Press), And When She Tasted of Knowledge (Nomadic Press), Southern Cryptozoology: A Field Guide To Beasts Of The Southern Wild (Hyacinth Girl Press), Here Comes Hell {dancing girl press}, & Heart Radicals, a collaborative  collection with Les Kay, Janeen Pergrin Rastall & Sandra Marchetti (ELJ Publications). Allie rarely sleeps, and her mother has hypothesized that she is actually a robot fueled by Diet Coke & Sri Racha. 

Andrew Koch (Brick-Woman

, 2016) lives in Spokane, Washington, where he is pursuing an MFA at Eastern Washington University.  He serves as managing editor for Stirring: A Literary Collection and his work has appeared or is forthcoming in Sugar House Review, Gargoyle, scissors & spackle, Rogue Agent, Rust + Moth, and others.

Anita Olivia Koester (Marco Polo

, 2016) is a Chicago poet, visual artist, and photographer. She is the author of the chapbook Marco Polo (Hermeneutic Chaos Press). Her poetry is published or forthcoming in Vinyl, Tahoma Literary Review, CALYX Journal, Stirring and elsewhere. Her poems have been nominated for Best New Poets and a Pushcart Prize, and won the Jo-Anne Hirshfield Memorial Poetry Award as well as the First Night Evanston Poetry Contest. Her writing has been supported by Vermont Studio Center, Art Farm, and SAFTA. Her collage and photography is published or forthcoming in Hobart, After Hours, Paris Lit Up, SKY+SEA Anthology and elsewhere. In 2015, she was a finalist in Photographer’s Forum Annual Spring Contest and is published in their book, Best of Photography 2015.  Visit her online at-

Ariana D. Den Bleyker (Knee Deep in Bone

, 2015) is a Pittsburgh native currently residing in Upstate New York, a wife, mother of two, a writer and an editor. When she’s not editing or writing, she’s spending time with her family and every once in a while sleeps. She is the author of several poetry chapbooks and collections, most recently Wayward Lines (RAWaRT Press, 2015) and Strangest Sea (Porkbelly Press, 2015), the novelette Finger : Knuckle : Palm (LucidPlay Publishing, 2014), the novella Dark Water (Number Thirteen Press), and the experimental memoir prosthesis (Lummox Press, 2014). Ariana is the founder of ELJ Publications, LLC, a small press specializing in the author, featuring Emerge Literary Journal, scissors & spackle, Amethyst Arsenic and other fine journals. She can be found at

Brennan DeFrisco (Exquisite Duet

, 2016) is an MFA candidate at Antioch University Los Angeles in the Creative Writing Program. He represented Berkeley at the 2015 National Poetry Slam, where his team took third place in the country. He is co-founder of Lucky Bastard Press, where he co-edits with his partner, Allie Marini. He is a teaching artist with California Poets In The Schools & Digital Storytellers, teaching poetry to student writers across the Bay Area. He’s the author of A Heart With No Scars by Nomadic Press. His work can be found or is forthcoming in Words Dance, Oracle Fine Arts Review, & others. He loves movies, poker, whiskey, Firefly and a particularly beautiful & talented woman. He occupies Oakland, CA with her.

Julie Brooks Barbour (Beautifully Whole

, 2015) is the author of Small Chimes (Aldrich Press, 2014), and two chapbooks: Earth Lust (2014) and Come To Me and Drink (2012), both from Finishing Line Press. Her poems have appeared in Waccamaw, Four Way Review, diode, storySouth, UCity Review, Prime Number Magazine, burntdistrict, The Rumpus, Midwestern Gothic, Blue Lyra Review, and Verse Daily. She is co-editor of Border Crossing and an Associate Poetry Editor at Connotation Press: An Online Artifact. She teaches composition and creative writing at Lake Superior State University. Find her at

LeeAnn Olivier (Spindle, My Spindle

, 2016) is a poet and essayist from Louisiana whose focus is on the subversion and reinvention of myths and fairy tales. Her poetry and creative nonfiction has been published in Hermeneutic Chaos, Damselfly Press, Biostories, SWAMP, Jelly Bucket, Sojourn, Illya’s Honey, and Stone Highway Review. Her poem “Leda” was chosen by Margaret Atwood as a finalist for the 2014 Thomas Morton Memorial Prize in Literary Excellence and appeared in The Puritan. She teaches literature and creative writing at Tarrant County College in Fort Worth, Texas, and is currently working on her MFA in the online creative writing program at the University of Texas at El Paso. When she’s not writing or teaching, she can be found practicing yoga or hiking with her husband Kevin and their dogs, Maya and Bijou.



Thank you for considering Hermeneutic Chaos Press as a possible home for your manuscript. We primarily publish chapbooks; however, we also occasionally publish anthologies.  We believe in championing work that goes beyond its pages to contribute meaningfully to the essential conversations that impact and empower the future of literature.  

All our titles are produced as small, open editions and are hand bound and trimmed. Each book measures approximately 6 x 8 inches. Our covers are made from premier matte papers, and are printed via inkjet.

As a policy, we do not charge a fee for reading your chapbook manuscripts.

Our open reading periods are as follows :
Summer Reading Period : May 1 - July 1
Winter Reading Period : December 1 - February 1

For chapbooks, we consider the following categories :

Poetry: We will consider both verse and prose poetry, as well as hybrid forms. We look for manuscripts that move us through a surprising use of language, imagery and poetic texture.

Prose: We will consider a collection of flash fictions, one/two long stories, vignettes, creative non-fiction and lyric essays. We appreciate work that possesses a compelling nature and captures the motion of a moment in all its vulnerability. 

Hybrid: These include works that defy the restrictions imposed by the conventional categories of poetry and fiction. We always encourage work that questions the normative notions of literature and seek aesthetic paths that encourage the muscles of various genres to build something new and challenging.

Submission Guidelines for Chapbooks : 

  • We accept submissions only through our online manager Submittable. Please do not send your manuscripts via email.
  • Please submit a manuscript that is between 15-30 pages in length (excluding the title page, acknowledgements, etc). 
  • All submissions must include a title page and an acknowledgements page (if required). There is no need to number the pages.
  • Please ensure that each piece gets its own page, and each new work begins on a new page.
  • We do consider individual pieces that have been published elsewhere, but the manuscript as a whole should be unpublished, whether online or in print. 
  • We encourage simultaneous submissions. However, please mention this in the cover letter and withdraw your manuscript immediately if it finds a home elsewhere.
  • You can submit multiple manuscripts in any category during a given reading period. However, each manuscript should be sent as a separate submission. 
  • Please note that manuscript revisions will not be considered once it has been submitted. This is because we begin to read the manuscripts very soon after they are submitted to us, and an editing request plays havoc with our momentum. We never disqualify manuscripts for errors or mistakes. We are primarily interested in speaking to the author's voice, and the themes and motifs that reside in the chapbooks. In case we have any question regarding your manuscript, we will contact you. However, if you feel that the changes would drastically alter the aesthetic shape of the manuscript, we request you to withdraw it in its entirety and submit again.

Response Time :
We aim to respond to all our submissions within 8-10 weeks, usually less. Please feel free to contact us if you don't hear from us by then.
Upon Acceptance :
Authors whose manuscripts are accepted for publication will receive 15 author copies as payment. They may also purchase additional author copies from the press at cost. 

How To Submit A Manuscript :

We only accept manuscript submissions electronically via our online submission manager Submittable. 

  • If you wish to order a chapbook at a discounted price along with your submission, you can do that too. This not only supports our press, but also allows you to read the work of writers with voices as bold and passionate as yours . For $6 (plus $2 s&h), we will ship a copy of one of the chapbooks of your choice from our catalog.

Thank you so much for giving us the opportunity to read your manuscript. We look forward to spending time with it!



Shinjini Bhattacharjee, Founding Editor & Editor-in-Chief

 She considers herself to be a lexical photographer who loves to rummage through language to find words that smell like infinite spandex, and weave them into images to cloak her experiences and emotions.

Shinjini Bhattacharjee is the author of two chapbooks, There Is No Way to Alter The Gravity Of A Doll (dancing girl press), and In My Landscape, I Am Not Real (Glass Lyre Press, 2018).  Her work has been published, or is forthcoming in The Bitter OleanderCimarron Review, Painted Bride Quarterly, Gargoyle, Tinderbox Poetry, Journal, decomP and other literary venues.