You work long hours carving your words into an image, finding just the right verbs, the perfect turn of phrase, the most excellent comebacks. Your dialog is sharp, your prose is perfect, and your imagery is breathtaking. Writing your book has been a labor of love, something you feel almost paternal about. After all, you’re giving birth to something important. Then, in a moment, it disappears.
You’re gasping in shock. But–!
If you write long enough, your chances of enduring endure a writing disaster of one kind or another seem inevitable. With the introduction of cloud services, this may seem like a no-brainer to you. I’m from the ancient era of saving documents on your computer, emailing them to yourself, copying them on discs (CD’s not floppies. I’m not that old!) or jump drives. Even then, it is of utmost importance to pay attention.
Just recently, the book I’ve been working on for over a year had finally reached a critical revision stage. I’d taken 30 days off, (the NaNoWriMo break!) and went back to it with a fresh perspective. I had been working on it sporadically for six weeks. Somehow during the national novel writing frenzy, I’d managed to copy the book from the cloud and onto my desktop. A fact I didn’t realize until I woke up one cold January morning and found my computer blank-screened and beeping, instead of booting up.
None of those weeks of revisions had been backed up. Normally, I depress the panic button if I’ve worked for 30 minutes and lose those tweaks; six weeks was beyond anything I could wrap my head around. Some of you remember my panic over an enormous file loss (all of my written work for nearly ten years. See link at the end of this post.)
Instead of flipping out, I comforted myself with the knowledge that I’d managed to move all book related projects to a specific memory stick and Dropbox. My life wasn’t over or even delayed. I had options of retrieval to pursue and in play. They involved a few less costly repairs (how does RAM go bad??) And once again, two weeks later, I got my book revisions back. I can’t press this enough. Save everything. Find a way to schedule file saving and /or work out of a cloud.
Click here to read about another saga regarding backing up files… Unlikely Houseguest
How are you saving your precious hours of writing?