The Worst of the Worst

That’s been my slogan since my computer crashed last Tuesday.  The blue screen of death.  But I wasn’t afraid.  I back up my work to a flash drive about every 2 weeks, so there was nothing written since then that I couldn’t live without or rewrite.  Besides, files can be resurrected, right?  Everything was going to be fine.

But it’s not.  The computer crash (which isn’t turning out to be very easy to recover) wasn’t the worst of it.  Computer crash = BAD, but lost back-up flash drive = COMPLETE & UTTER HORROR.

Horror on a whole new field planet.

Not only might my photos, videos, and a plethora of downloaded PDFs, ePubs, Mobi files, etc. be lost, but the last edit to my novel, Wicked Tempest, which topped in at 110K and was a grueling effort to complete. I have a second back location (Plan C) but nothing on there that is newer than 4-6 months old, and unfortunately doesn’t include the last edit of my novel.  What was I thinking?  That I couldn’t possibly lose both my back-up flash drive and hard drive on the same day.  It’s almost demonic.

I’m not going to cry about it, although I might indulge in a bit of pouting and additional wine and chocolate consumption.  Still, there may be hope – my computer is in the hands of an under-appreciated computer geek, which I’ll be certain to give proper thanks to.  Also, I might just find that darn back-up flash drive, and then spring can resume its sweet bird melody and spray of colors once again.

Until then, I’m backing up on a new micro-metal flash drive daily and getting myself going on that new novel.  Focus not on what was lost but on what can be gained, another slogan to help stave off the insanity one more day.

Point of the matter: Back up your work at least every week, and have a second back-up location (another computer, flash drive, or online storage like Google’s Cloud) for every month.  Time and money well spent.  A good slogan never hurts either.

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10 thoughts on “The Worst of the Worst

  1. This is the true defintion of horror for a writer. I feel sick for you. I hope that all is not lost and there will be a happy outcome outta this. I’m paranoid about this happening to me. Something I do, besides backing up to a flash, is e-mail myself the latest revision of current works every day. It’s a good way for me to proof and ensure easily accessible files exist in an emergency. Keeping my fingers crossed for ya.

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    1. Emailing works is a great idea, Angel. That’s actually what I’ve been doing, going through emails and downloading submitted works, so I’ve been able to salvage more than I thought. Thanks, bud.

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  2. Very scary. I am a bit paranoid about all this so I already back up to two places: one locally and one across the internet. The key for me is to set it up to happen automatically and constantly. If you have to remember to do it you’ll probably forget, I find.

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  3. Oh no! That’s the worst! I think we’ve all been through that at one point or another. Fingers crossed that your under-appreciated computer geek is able to salvage something.

    I use Dropbox and a thumbdrive. We actually bought an external drive for this very reason, but it’s only backed up to my old laptop files, and I haven’t re-synced it in at least a year probably. Maybe I should go do that now.

    Wishing you luck!!

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    1. Yes, re-sync ASAP, Mary. I’m going to check out your suggestions, thanks. I do feel more seasoned by this as a writer – losing months of work is like a blank page, strangely freeing.

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  4. Oh Erin, I am so, so sorry. Fingers, toes and eyes crossed your computer person can retrieve your stories off the hard drive. I’m especially sad for you about loosing the last edit of Wicked Tempest. I can’t imagine the frustration you’re feeling! Gah. I am sure that flash drive is around somewhere. Behind the desk or in the kids toy box. ;-) Lots of hugs and good vibes your way!

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    1. Your good vibes are working Jodi. I just talked with lovely computer man and he thinks he can get most of the files. I’m feeling much more optimistic, but won’t sigh relief just yet. Thanks for the good luck!

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  5. Holy crap, Erin, that’s the worst. Keep working on your new novel, definitely, and remember that Hemingway lost his manuscript too. He was able to churn out some pretty good stuff after that.

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