Current theme song: “Can’t Hold Us” by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
Current stage in process: Writing Book #3 of YA series; working on TOP SECRET STUFF
REMEMBER THE DOOM OF THE 30TH OF JUNE!
I suppose without any context this dire warning doesn’t make a lot of sense, but by the end of this story it sure will.
A couple years back I was in a gleeful writing spree for a week. I made some rather impressive daily word counts (actually setting a new record which I have not yet again broken). It was pure creative magic and the words just flowed.
Then the 30th of June happened.
Me, being a complete idiot, only had my story (which was then getting close to 100 pages) saved on a single flash drive. I’d plug into my laptop and write away each day. Why did I do this? I have absolutely no idea. Some form of stupidity gripped me for whatever reason and I’ve regretted it to this day.
So what happened? The worst thing possible. I plugged in my flash drive on the 30th ready for more word magic when nothing happened. The flash drive wouldn’t register. I unplugged it, plugged it in again, and still nothing. Cue repeating this procedure multiple times in a growing panic. I tried plugging it into my desktop. I tried a family member’s desktop. I tried everything conceivable in the array of knowledge I had collected from working on computers since I was a wee lass.
*Cue dramatic drum roll* And SURPRISE! Nothing worked.
Frantic to save my near 100 pages of inspired writing, I looked up companies that work with such problems and extract data from broken flash drives. My father and I did our research and picked the most promising one. Although groaning about the inevitable $200 fee I was surely to pay, I sent it in. I NEEDED my book back.
Turns out there’s more than one kind of flash drive out there and I picked the kind that’s vastly more difficult to extract information from. They had a special kind of technology but it would cost a heck of a lot more than $200, money which I did not have. I was faced with the mortifying prospective of losing all of that work and rewriting the book from the beginning.
So, what happened? I took the hard road.
Unable (and rather unwilling for the price) to pay to try to recover the data on my stupid flash drive, I cried it out and decided if I wanted to write that book then I’d just have to start all over again. So, while the beginning was still fresh in my mind, I made a very detailed outline of what I had just written. At the time I couldn’t bring myself to actually start writing again. It took me several months before I was able to get back to that story, sit down, and write a beginning which in my mind had already been done so spectacularly the first time around. It’s hard to recreate that magic.
But I wrote it. I rewrote that beginning I had worked so hard for and, by golly, I finished that book. Now I make sure to create regular backups of my writing and in various locations, dreading that the doom on the 30th of June will somehow come back to haunt me.
Moral of this story? BACKUP YOUR WORK. Trust me. You’ll thank yourself in the end. But if the worst does happen, pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and get back to that book. You CAN do it even if at the time it feels like the end of the world.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go backup my latest project. And REMEMBER: