Holy Cow...Potential Disaster Averted

I spend a lot of time online...no A LOT of time! So, I am particularly careful about maintaining my computer's safety. I change my passwords frequently. Keep my protections, firwalls, etc up-to-date. Scan for viruses regularly. Back up my files and save the important things on an external drive....

Okay, I am not as good as I should be about backing everything up. I was. Before. When I'd hear about friends nearly losing their manuscripts. I'd email it to myself nightly, just to make certain it was safe. But I became complacent. And nearly paid too high a price...

This morning I woke with an incredible scene in my thoughts - the revised ending to LIBERA ME. I wrote it in my thoughts, anxious to get a chance to write it in the ms. As is my routine every morning, I got ready for work, and left early, determined to steal an hour to write before the day job. I got my latte, set up at my local starbucks and plugged in the laptop.

As is also typical, my laptop screen was a little wonky (its a technical term..lol) and I wound up doing a hard restart. My computer didn't like that and wanted to "fix" my startup problem. I did a system restore...again, no big deal.

Until my computer restarted. And the entire computer was all in some bizarre symbol ASCII-like font.


Holy cow! Nothing I did fixed the problem. All I could think about were my manuscripts and the fact that I hadn't backed them up in over a month...A MONTH. Bad bad writer!!!!

I have three mss due to editors in the next few weeks. And they are NOT backed up. No. Nononononono......

So, I raced to work. Grabbed my flashdrive. Moved what I HOPED were the right files to the flash (I have a partially eidetic memory) and prayed. Loud. Hard.

Slipping the flash drive into my work computer, I scanned it for viruses. Nothing. (whew...breathing a tad easier)
I scrolled to the folders, and opened each ms - one at a time. They all opened fine. I could read all the files.

WHEW!!! I had lost NOTHING. I would finish edits on time. Didn't need to freak out.

As soon as I knew everything was safe, I immediately backed up the files, emailed them to myself, everything I should be doing nightly.

And everything I WILL DO from now on.

So, words to the wise...backup your files. Diligently.

Oh! And my laptop? It is going to the Geek Squad at lunch. Wish me luck.
Now...on to carve some time to write down that scene....


  1. Gosh, that is like the scariest horror story for a writer. You've prompted me to get back into the routine of backing up regularly.

  2. That sounds horrifying! I actually had a friend, who had her computer crash and she lost an entire novel. Heart-breaking moment. I'm gonna go back up right now! Glad that you didn't lose anything!

  3. I had a similar experience a few months ago. And YES always back up files! Nothing is worse than losing everything.
    I'm so glad you didn't have to start over again. Whew!


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