by Nate Ragolia
When I started BONED five years ago, it was a simple, silly idea. “What if we just wrote stories with bones and skeletons in them?” Now, 285 stories, poems, essays, plays, a comic, and some original art later, it’s clear to me that this little experiment was more than just an excuse to write, but a conversation between writers and readers about the essence of life.
Our bones hold us up, they contain our organs, they allow our motility. They represent our capacity for courage… for we’re only spineless when we’re cowardly. They make us solid and whole. And that’s what the writing here has done for me. To have spent the last five years collecting, editing, and sharing this immense haul of incredible work was a true blessing. And that makes it emotional to say goodbye, but it is time.
I had wanted to write some fiction for this last post, something final and comprehensive to punctuate everything that BONED has been, but it would do a disservice to act as if there’s a story-based ending to such an amazing collaboration as this one. BONED isn’t about me, or my writing. It’s about each of us who contributed. I have made incredible friends, many of whom I now talk with regularly, because of this project. I have been elated to read works that made me jealous of their talented scribes. I have been brought to laughter and to tears and felt hope and fear and joy… all because of the writers who trusted BONED to share their words.
The beauty of the internet, despite all of its incredible and disturbing misuses and abuses, is that the words here will exist in perpetuity (barring the sudden collapse of WordPress… or society, of course). BONED will forever be a time capsule of this project, of its writers, of some of my own work, and the work of friends who have since passed from this world. Perhaps that’s a little too florid, but I like to think of it as important because it was important to me, and it was an honor to share all the excellent writing we have published.
So, thank you. Thank you! THANK YOU! If you’re here, you’ve read some of this work, making a writer’s life better (and believe me, being read does make a writer’s life better), or you’ve contributed, making my life better… or maybe you stumbled upon this by accident, in which case I ask you to take some time to read the work here, to feel the feels, to embrace the bones inside us all that make us equal, fragile, resilient, and meaningful.
Be well and stay safe,