The Bones is a wonderful and entertaining read for anyone who has ever gamed. You’ll smile as you recognize the victories in getting the perfect roll at the right time and commiserate with the low roll that caused everything to fall apart. In between, you’ll laugh and maybe even learn something.

GeekDad @ Wired Magazine

 

The BonesThe Bones: Us and Our Dice

Edited by Will Hindmarch

Now shipping.

Written by Keith Baker, Jason L Blair, Greg Costikyan, Ray Fawkes, Matt Forbeck, Pat Harrigan, Jess Hartley, Fred Hicks, Will Hindmarch, Kenneth Hite, John Kovalic, James Lowder, Russ Pitts, Jesse Scoble, Mike Selinker, Jared Sorensen, Paul Tevis, Jeff Tidball, Monica Valentinelli, Chuck Wendig, and Wil Wheaton

Including interviews with Irving Finkel, Scott Nesin, and Cardell Kerr

…if you want to get one (or more) copies of just this book.
…if you also want to pick up Hamlet’s Hit Points or Things We Think About Games.

ISBN 13: 978-0-9818840-1-1
ISBN 10: 0-9818840-1-6
6×9 inches • 224 pages • softcover
$18.95 (US)

About the Book

This isn’t about math. It’s about unlucky breaks and victory against all odds.

This isn’t about percentiles and probabilities. It’s about late-night game-ending rolls where everything hinges on that climactic moment when one single die skitters across the table and determines the fate of a hero, a city, an empire…

The Bones gathers writing about fandom and family—about gamers, camaraderie, and memories— and ties them together where they meet: our dice. These are essays and anecdotes about the ways dice make us crazy, about the stakes we play for and the thrill we get from not knowing what the next roll will bring.

Step back and look at how we play with dice.

Ordering Information

Orders for The Bones: Us and Our Dice placed on the Gameplaywright web site ship directly from us, processed and mailed by our own hands. In addition to ordering the book from us, you can also…

Most Gameplaywright books are available to retailers through hobby game distribution channels via Impressions Advertising & Marketing. The Bones, however, is an exception, and is instead available via co-publisher Atomic Overmind Press’s arrangement with Publisher Services Inc. (PSI). If you’re a retailer having any difficulty finding any of our titles, including The Bones, please don’t hesitate to e-mail service@gameplaywright.net.

Kindle and ePub editions of The Bones are in the works, but we’re hesitant to suggest a release date because we’re not sure how long it’s going to take us to assemble the files and push them into channels. If you’re sick of waiting, we’d probably find a gentle e-mail request to get a move on motivational. (Check the sidebar for e-mail addresses.)

The Special Edition

A hardcover special edition of The Bones was available in a limited window in late May and early June, 2010. The special edition run was printed exactly to order; no more are available. All special edition hardcovers were signed and numbered by The Bones editor Will Hindmarch. Those who ordered also received an advance PDF copy.


The Dice-O-Matic Mark II

The interview in The Bones with Scott Nesin, inventor of the Dice-O-Matic, promises a link to the marvelous YouTube video of his marvelous creation. Follow the link, or watch it here. In either case, pick your jaw up off the floor when you’re done.

Although it wasn’t apropos of the topic of dice and so didn’t make its way into The Bones, in the process of interviewing Scott, I read an account he wrote of his then four-year-old son’s drive to… well, that would be telling, and it’d spoil the story. Read “Wood Tape;” it’ll be worth the time.


58 Comments

  1. TAGIE/ChiTAG Report | Forbeck.com
    November 23, 2009

    [...] happened after our chance encounter 17 years ago. It involves dice, and I recently wrote it up for The Bones, a new book due out early next year from Gameplaywright Press and Atomic Overmind [...]

    Reply
  2. gameplaywright.net // story, games, together
    November 27, 2009

    [...] and I are both a little swamped with upcoming projects (like The Bones), so we’ve been slow to post. Given the time of year, though, I thought I’d toss out [...]

    Reply
  3. The Alliterates » TAGIE/ChiTAG Report
    December 14, 2009

    [...] happened after our chance encounter 17 years ago. It involves dice, and I recently wrote it up for The Bones, a new book due out early next year from Gameplaywright Press and Atomic Overmind [...]

    Reply
  4. Marty
    December 15, 2009

    We used to “Zen” out our dice. I believe Will had us switch from leaving the dice on 1, so they “knew” what to avoid, to 10 or 20, so they “knew” where they were supposed to go.

    This will be an amazing read!

    Reply
  5. Greg
    December 15, 2009

    For me it wasn’t necessarily how the dice sat – but which ones I rolled, or how they were rolled.

    I could see picking up a copy of the limited edition if you go this route and make one available.

    Reply
  6. Dave T. Game
    December 15, 2009

    I think if I found out there was going to be a limited edition hardback, I would have to pick it up. I wasn’t quite connected enough to hear about “Things” until long after it had come out, but after having read it, buying The Bones in a limited edition would be obvious to me.

    Reply
  7. Daniel M. Perez (Highmoon Games)
    December 15, 2009

    This is a great idea for a book! What’s even cooler, I now have this idea for promoting it: upon release, we get a Blog Carnival going with people writing a post on the same subject. I think it’s a perfect topic for a blog post and it can drive awareness of the book all around.

    I’m gonna mosey over to the RPG Bloggers Network to pitch the idea. Once the release date is known, the plan can be put into action. :-)

    Reply
  8. Jeff Tidball
    December 15, 2009

    That’s a great promotion idea, Daniel. I know next to nothing about blog carnivals, but from what I hear, this seems like a good topic for one, and it could really serve to make people aware of the book.

    Let us know if, or what, we can do to make this happen. (Other than, you know, hitting you with a release date. That’s something that Atomic Overmind will eventually set. You’ll find out when we find out.)

    Reply
  9. Daniel M. Perez (Highmoon Games)
    December 15, 2009

    I will write up a post with the idea and organize the Carnival for the month of release. It’s fairly loose like that. I already put out the idea via Twitter today (http://twitter.com/GamerTraveler/status/6704767917).

    Reply
  10. gameplaywright.net // story, games, together
    March 1, 2010

    [...] your first look at the cover for The Bones. Please note that the final contributor list (if you can make it out) is still subject to change. [...]

    Reply
  11. Matt
    May 13, 2010

    I wouldn’t mind being part of the blog carnival if it gets going.

    I was not approved for membership in the RPG Bloggers Network, but if you’ve got room, keep Flames Rising in mind.

    Reply
  12. Daniel M. Perez
    May 13, 2010

    I’d totally buy a limited version, so find another 49 buyers.

    And I’ll totally do the blog carnival. I’ll contact the lot if you later to arrange details.

    Reply
  13. Preston
    May 13, 2010

    This sounds like a fun book, and I’d be interested in it as an e-book. Not PDF, but something I could read on my ebook reader such as an EPUB.

    Reply
  14. Jeff Tidball
    May 14, 2010

    What kind of reader do you have, Preston?

    Reply
  15. Preston
    May 14, 2010

    I have an “old” Sony 505. It’s an e-ink device like the Kindle, but without wireless. Considering I can load two or three books at once while it’s tethered, I haven’t really missed wireless.

    I’m saving my pennies for next year when the next class of e-ink screens come to market. They’ll have even better contrast and support video (still black and white, though).

    Reply
  16. Pookie
    May 14, 2010

    Will you do two sets of the signed books as you did for Things We Think About Games — one for the USA and the other for Europe?

    Reply
  17. Jeff Tidball
    May 15, 2010

    Not sure what you mean, Pookie. There was just one set of “First Twenty” TWT books, although we did mail them to both continents. Can you clarify?

    Reply
  18. Pookie
    May 21, 2010

    My memory may be failing me. I thought that last time you had done two sets of books — one for the USA market and another for Europe. Obviously not.

    Reply
  19. gameplaywright.net // story, games, together
    May 24, 2010

    [...] for updates on this topic.Powered by WP Greet Box WordPress PluginInterest in a special edition of The Bones has been strong, so Will and I have just opened pre-orders for a hardcover special edition of the [...]

    Reply
  20. Boned
    May 25, 2010

    [...] I bring this up because the special-edition hardcover is available for pre-ordering right now. It’ll stay available to order until June 6th or until they hit about 100 copies ordered, whichever comes first (which for all I know could come fast). The special-edition is being printed to order, come June. It’s available only direct through the Gameplaywright folks, and costs $27 + shipping. As an added benefit, folks who preorder the hardcover will get the PDF within 24 hours of placing the order. Details and purchase widgetry to be found hyunh: http://gameplaywright.net/?page_id=958 [...]

    Reply
  21. Painting With Shotguns XXXVII
    May 26, 2010

    [...] You can pre-order that Special Edition here. [...]

    Reply
  22. Will Hindmarch
    May 26, 2010

    Just an update on epub solutions: We’re still trying to decide on the right approach for us. We want the book to be bug-free and handsome, and that’ll take time. If you have a favorite e-reader or electronic experience that you think the book should accommodate, let us know.

    Reply
  23. gameplaywright.net // story, games, together
    June 1, 2010

    [...] to subscribe to the RSS feed for updates on this topic.Powered by WP Greet Box WordPress PluginWith The Bones coming out this month, in both special and regular editions, we thought it would be a good and fun idea to promote some more conversation about dice and [...]

    Reply
  24. L’esprit d’escalier » Review: THE BONES: Us and Our Dice
    June 1, 2010

    [...] week, I finally got my grimy little paws on The Bones: Us and Our Dice.  And lo, it is awesome.  If you’ll pardon my clumsy attempt at a review, I’m going [...]

    Reply
  25. Dicing on the Cake « Wordasylum: Where dreams go insane.
    June 4, 2010

    [...] Like dice?  You must check out “The Bones: Us and Our Dice” when it hits.  Here is a link to the page on Gameplaywright about this forthcoming tome of [...]

    Reply
  26. GM With ADD » Blog Archive » The Bones Blog Carnival : Necromunda Dice.
    June 6, 2010

    [...] I read The Bones and saw they were doing a Blog Carnival, I figured I could contribute a story. About fifteen years [...]

    Reply
  27. Josh Rensch
    June 6, 2010

    I just posted a story I remember with the dice.

    http://gmwithadd.com/?p=53

    Reply
  28. Dice of Creation » DarrellHardy.com
    June 8, 2010

    [...] help celebrate the release of The Bones, the new book from Gameplaywright about gamers and their dice, I’m firing up the calliope [...]

    Reply
  29. The Bones – Was Würfel bedeuten « Einige Seiten des Buches Eibon
    June 25, 2010

    [...] amel @ 16:26 Ich halte gerade die wunderschöne, in Leinen gebundene limitierte Ausgabe von „The Bones“ in den Händen. Es ist ein Buch für „Gamer“ (im Gegensatz zu „Spieler“, [...]

    Reply
  30. Three Non-Fiction Releases about Gaming | MLV Writes
    June 28, 2010

    [...] second release is a very “heady” essay about dice and divination for THE BONES, which was edited by Will Hindmarch and published through Gameplaywright. What is this book about? [...]

    Reply
  31. Highmoon's Ponderings » The Gift of Dice [THE BONES Blog Carnival]
    June 30, 2010

    [...] has published a book called THE BONES: Us And Our Dice, a collection of articles and essays celebrating those funny-shaped randomizers that every gamer [...]

    Reply
  32. Highmoon's Ponderings » The Gift of Dice [THE BONES Blog Carnival]
    June 30, 2010

    [...] has published a book called THE BONES: Us And Our Dice, a collection of articles and essays celebrating those funny-shaped randomizers that every gamer [...]

    Reply
  33. Electroshock Boogie VII « Wordasylum: Where dreams go insane.
    June 30, 2010

    [...] Will Hindmarch over at The Gist answers a question about what makes the best supernatural fiction, and his answer gives a lot to think over.  Why not ask him some questions on Tumblr, and while you’re at it, buy a copy of The Bones? [...]

    Reply
  34. Dare I say that I wrote Fan Fiction for a Charity Contest? Read it here. | MLV Writes
    July 6, 2010

    [...] of space that I had to tell it. In addition to his other works, Wil had written essays for both THE BONES and FAMILY GAMES: the 100 BEST, two books that I had also contributed to, so I’m familiar [...]

    Reply
  35. I Have a Story To Share
    July 6, 2010

    [...] of space that I had to tell it. In addition to his other works, Wil had written essays for both THE BONES and FAMILY GAMES: the 100 BEST, two books that I had also contributed to, so I’m familiar [...]

    Reply
  36. Painting With Shotguns XLIII
    July 7, 2010

    [...] The Bones: Us And Our Dice is ready to roll. (See what I did there? Ready to roll? Like dice? Like bones? Shut up. No, you [...]

    Reply
  37. Shepherd’s Pie: Fourth Helping | Geekcentricity
    July 8, 2010

    [...] about a dice-centric topic, Gameplaywright is hosting a Blog Carnival to commemorate the release of The Bones. There’s a lot of discussion going on about the role of “just having fun” in [...]

    Reply
  38. Matthew D. Gandy
    July 13, 2010

    Just FYI: nothing on this page tells me how much either edition costs. I had to click on the Buy Now link to find it. Same with the Things We Think About Games page.

    If there were PDF versions of all three books (Things We Think About Games, The Bones, and Hamlet’s Hit Points), I would buy all three, to read on my iPad. I *may* buy these in hardcopy, but I’ll probably wait several months or buy them at a con (Dreamation 2011, at the earliest), so get those digital products cranking!

    Reply
  39. Will Hindmarch
    July 13, 2010

    Thanks for writing, Matthew! I’m happy to say that we’ve got PDF editions of all three books coming soon, and that I’ve corrected the pricing issue on these pages. I hope you’ll be able to pick up your PDF copies of the books soon. Thanks for bearing with us!

    Reply
  40. Matthew D. Gandy
    July 13, 2010

    Awesome response time, Will! Glad to hear about the PDF editions. I’ll be looking for your tweet, and then you can be looking for my money.

    Reply
  41. Lovely Bones » DarrellHardy.com
    July 14, 2010

    [...] a couple weeks of bus-reading, I’ve finally finished my copy of The Bones, published by Gameplaywright and edited by Will Hindmarch, and behold, it was [...]

    Reply
  42. » GenCon on my Mind • Jason L Blair, Writer & Game Designer
    August 3, 2010

    [...] Sunday, I’ll be at Gameplaywright‘s signing ceremony for their all-about-dice anthology The Bones (to which I contributed an essay). That will be from 1p-2p at the Indie Press Revolution booth [...]

    Reply
  43. Connie (Ariel Manx)
    August 19, 2010

    Can’t wait to read the book! Just hearing about it inspired me to look at the dice habits of my friends and me – and I wrote about it in my column at Geek’s Dream Girl. http://geeksdreamgirl.com/2010/08/12/roll-the-bones-gamers-and-their-dice-habits/

    Reply
  44. Jeff Tidball
    August 19, 2010

    Thanks for sharing the link, Connie!

    Reply
  45. Jesse Scoble » Why Don’t You Know These Things
    August 20, 2010

    [...] I’m in THE BONES. Why do you not own this book yet? It is very [...]

    Reply
  46. » Hamlet’s Hit Points • Jason L Blair, Writer & Game Designer
    September 2, 2010

    [...] of The Bones and Things We Think About Games fame, released the book at GenCon and it quickly sold out. If you [...]

    Reply
  47. If You Play It Safe: Matt Forbeck on Taking Risks in Writing « Booklife
    December 6, 2010

    [...] has am essay in The Bones: Us and Our Dice, edited by Will Hindmarch.  The Bones is a collection of essays about dice, gaming, and good [...]

    Reply
  48. Always Rolling the Dice: Monica Valentinelli on Taking Risks in Writing « Booklife
    December 13, 2010

    [...] Monica Valentinelli is the project manager for the horror webzine FlamesRising.com. She’s been working as a freelance writer and game designer since 2005. Her e-book, The Queen of Crows, features an enhanced short story about a Navajo elder and the queen of crows, Mahochepi. Valentinelli writes a column for both the Apex Book Company and for the How to Write Shop. She is also one of the contributors to Will Hindmarch’s The Bones: Us and Our Dice. [...]

    Reply
  49. Betting the Odds: Kenneth Hite on Taking Risks in Writing « Booklife
    December 14, 2010

    [...] Take, for example, his essay “A Random History of Dice,” which appears in Will Hindmarch’s The Bones: Us and Our Dice.  On the first page alone, Hite references Einstein, God, H. P. Lovecraft, and Ralph Waldo [...]

    Reply
  50. Between Good & Great: Russ Pitts on Taking Risks in Writing « Booklife
    December 28, 2010

    [...] dice.  To read the opening pages of his essay “The Dice They Carried” in Will Hindmarch’s The Bones: Us and Our Dice, you’d think he’s more than a little funny about his dice bags, too.  The essay opens with [...]

    Reply
  51. gameplaywright.net // story, games, together
    January 4, 2011

    [...] Greet Box WordPress PluginWriter and editer James Lowder, one of the many talented contributors to The Bones: Us and Our Dice, kindly gave us a few copies of the superhero anthology he mentions in his Bones essay. We thought [...]

    Reply
  52. Wrangler of Dragons: An Interview with Jeff Tidball « Dragon Age Oracle
    March 1, 2011

    [...] Speaking of Will, he and I are the co-founders of Gameplaywright, a publisher of non-fiction books about games and stories. We put out two books last year: Hamlet’s Hit Points and The Bones: Us and Our Dice. [...]

    Reply
  53. 2011 Ennies Nominations Announced : Critical Hits
    July 11, 2011

    [...] boxed set, Castle Ravenloft, Hamlet’s Hit Points, the great dice bags from Dragon Chow, and The Bones- like many others this year, this is a solid category with no bad [...]

    Reply
  54. ENnies 2011 Nominations :: RyanMacklin.com
    August 16, 2011

    [...] no secret that I love the guys at Gameplaywright. I’m beyond happy to see The Bones get nominated. And Hamlet’s Hit Points as well. The books they forge are nothing short of [...]

    Reply
  55. Wordstudio: The Gist
    November 3, 2011

    [...] I was accompanying to the show—and to make a good impression at the signing. I slipped a copy of The Bones into my bag, thinking I would give it as a gift, just as I gave him Things We Thing About Games at [...]

    Reply
  56. Six Questions: Will Hindmarch |
    December 27, 2012

    [...] are suggested as an RPG story mechanic. Years later Will invited me to take part in his anthology The Bones: Us and Our Dice. Later still I had a chance to play in his cyberpunk adventure Always/Never/Now, which was one of [...]

    Reply
  57. 2011 Ennies Nominations Announced — Critical Hits
    April 5, 2013

    [...] boxed set, Castle Ravenloft, Hamlet’s Hit Points, the great dice bags from Dragon Chow, and The Bones- like many others this year, this is a solid category with no bad [...]

    Reply

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