Sad News

I haven’t updated this in a while with very good reasons…

1. Everyone knows that we switched from Verizon to Comcast, correct? Well, the internet still refuses to work. It’s getting pretty annoying. I can’t use my laptop at all. I can’t use it to work on my websites, I can’t use it to update this, and I can’t use it for school. My dad is bringing my laptop to a guy to completely clean it out because it had a virus on it a year or so ago. All the other laptops work (sometimes), so we’re wondering if my laptop still has some bits of the virus on it and that’s why it refuses to work. So I’m going to be out of a laptop for a little while…well, I already have been out of a laptop.

I’m using the school computer right now so–I hate to say this–it’s a good thing that I go to school five days a week. I need to get absolutely everything done at school. It’s such a pain, though. The only thing I can use my own laptop for it for writing on Word. Which brings me to the worst part of this post as well as the other reason as to why I haven’t updated in so long…

2. My flash drive broke. My sister tried to fix it and the computer guy my dad knows tried to fix it. It’s completely dead. The guy said he could fix it, but the software would cost 800 dollars. He said he could ship it to Brazil so it would be cheaper, but…I said no. That’s too much. My uncle is going to try to fix it, but I really have my doubts that it will work. We’ll have to see, but I’m pretty sure it’s gone.

It really upset and discouraged me. All of my novels were on there. I didn’t have any other back-ups to the novels because my computer had gotten the virus. Along with school work, Sunday school stuff, and website stuff, this is everything I lost:

  • Hunter — I printed it out to edit it, so worse comes to worst, I’ll just have to type it up again.
  • Hunted — The sequel to Hunter…I was half way through it and now it’s gone.
  • Diary of a Lover — I printed this out to edit it, too, so again I can just type it up again.
  • Saving Each Other — My 2012 NaNo that I finished last December…100% gone. I had no back-ups and none of it was printed out…I have to start from scratch all over again.
  • The Blank Page — It wasn’t finished, but as you all know, I have been working hard on this one a lot. Now I have to start completely over again.
  • Asking Bobby & Ashley’s Day at the Aquarium — Both of these are printed out, so they’re safe.
  • Fast Friends — Didn’t get too far in this one, but at least it was better than nothing…now it is nothing.
  • Echo — I was almost done with this one…gone.
  • Last Friday — I wrote this in a notebook and I had one more chapter left. Typing it up took me a really long time and now I’m going to have to do it again…at least it’s not completely gone.
  • The Others — My very first NaNo and the only one I every won. I never finished the novel, but I only had one or two more chapters left…another one gone.
  • Far Away — A love story I started, re-started, and re-started again…I got pretty far with it and now that’s gone, too.
  • Diary of a Killer — Didn’t get too far, but I really liked where it was going.
  • A Job to get Done — I loved this one. I was over 50 pages into it…gone.
  • Pyro — The origin story of my muse…the one and only character who speaks to me while I write. He popped into my head long before I even decided to make him a character in a story. I have no idea where he came from, but now I have to write his story all over again.
  • The Battle of Cooper’s Place — A script I wrote for Script Frenzy…it was my first one and I won. It sucked, but now it’s gone.
  • Halfway to Heaven — Another script I wrote. I loved this script. I was going to turn it into a novel, too…now I have to re-write that whole thing.
  • Four Fathers — A TV show I based off of a Ninja Turtles FanFiction I wrote. It was coming along pretty well.
  • All of my FanFiction stories…which was somewhere in the 100s, so I can’t even list them all to you.

And there you have it. 18 stories lost…there were more, but they were only a page or so in so they weren’t really important because they were small prompts and such.

I cried. I’ll admit that. I was thinking of everything that I lost, all that time and imagination I spent on those stories…and they’re all gone. I have to say that it was a real eye-opener for me, though. That saying is really true…”you never know what you have until it’s gone.”

So I decided that not only am I going to keep up with writing more, I’m going to focus more on finishing everything that I start. Looking at that list, I had a ton of ideas and characters roaming around in my head. So I think it’s time to jot down small ideas instead of switching completely over to a new novel. I have a new novel in the works at the moment and since I’m in the mood to write it, I think I’m going to start off with that one. I still have a lot of planning to do for it, but that’s alright. In the meantime, I can start editing some novels…well, just Hunter and Diary of a Lover since those are the only novels I have left at the moment.

But now I think about it, I have a ton of novels that are started in notebooks…I should really go through my notebooks, huh?

Anyway, let this be a lesson learned for all of you! I have no idea how my flash drive broke, but I had two (well, now one). I should have put everything on both. I’ll keep that in mind for next time. So I’ll try to writing again as soon as possible, but I kind of need to wait until I get my laptop back. I think my dad is going to call Comcast, too…even though everyone else’s work, they still go on the fritz sometimes. Hopefully this will be the end.

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45 thoughts on “Sad News

  1. I am sorry to hear that you lost so much of your work! I can’t even imagine what you must be going through. Good luck with your writing/editing and I hope that at least some of your work can be salvaged!

    • I hope so, too…we’ll just have to wait and see what happens, though. But I wrote all of those ideas down once, I should be able to re-create them…and maybe have them be a little better than the “first draft.”

      Thanks for the support!

  2. Holy cow, that’s terrible! x_x;;; I’m so, so sorry you lost all of that.

    GET DROPBOX!! AND GOOGLE DRIVE!!!! I can’t express this enough!! I’ve always been super-duper paranoid about losing my fiction, so whenever I’m working on my fiction, I back it up to a flashdrive AND Dropbox AND G-drive. I’ve lived with enough computers and long enough with my IT husband to know how little I trust computers and modern technology. (If I had the money for the ink, I’d print out every single thing I write, but ink’s expensive, man.)

    Before the modern age of flashdrives and Internet saves, I had about a kajillion floppy drives that I used to save all my fiction (horrible and badly-written though it was.) At least I don’t save a new draft every time I edit a word or two now, though! Progress!! XD

    I’m super-sorry about your internet. 🙁 Honestly, it could be anything…a bad router, a bad cable to the router, a bad modem, a virus still lingering on the network or your compy….technology’s just super-twitchy. (I often get paranoid about old blogs and online journals, but I have to just download the entries best I can. If that doesn’t work, well…I just have to assume it’s for the best. 😛 )

    If you get a Dropbox, tell them Liz at china.lizard@gmail.com sent you! 🙂

    • Thank you for all of the suggestions! Yeah, I’m really going to look into Dropbox and Google Drive and such. But I’ll keep another flash drive as well as the actual computer. Then I might have three or four drafts saved.

      Ink is wicked expensive…I print out everything when I’m done with it but not as I go along. When I do print, I print it out at school. That way I’m not wasting my paper and my ink…I cheat. 🙂

  3. I’m so sorry! 🙁 That’s horrible. I lost some writing when my computer died a few years ago, but at least I didn’t really have that much stuff.

    But you’re right – you wrote that all once. You can do it again. I lost like 2k during NaNo because Write or Die crashed, and it was so frustrating. I was really upset, but then I went to write it again, and I realized that that second version was actually better than the first version had been.

    Obviously losing 2,000 words doesn’t even come close to everything that you lost, but maybe it will still be okay in the end. It’s horrible that you lost everything. I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed for you!

  4. There was a time long ago when I lost my entire poetry collection, over 8 years of work. Gone. Just like that. It was heart-rending.
    But I did go on to write again, more and often. Anyone who’s still in school and had 18 pieces started already (even if you find you can’t retrieve them) has the ability to continue writing for many more years.
    At last there’s that.
    Everything you write from here on out will get emailed to yourself, right?
    Keep Writing.
    ej

    • Oh my, I am so sorry to hear that! At least you moved on, though. I have to say that I was discouraged and I still am a little, but I’m never going to get published if i just give up on a techno malfunction.

      Yes, everything will be e-mailed to me and then some. Thank you.

  5. You have my condolences. I’ve been there so many times that I’ve taken up the habit of emailing my works to myself when I update them, so I always have a copy that I can access if things go wrong. It isn’t the greatest system since I lose access if I lack the internet, but it keeps the works safe.

    Hopefully, your laptop only needs to be cleaned up and maybe the drivers need to be updated to work with the new internet server. It happened to my computer once.

  6. You have my condolances. All these comments does make it sound like a funeral of sorts (which it really is). My sister had the same thing happen to her and she called it “the great crash”. She was eventually able to find all her work (which I hope the same for you)

    You also might want to start using dropbox (which I have because of my sister’s misfortune).

    I do hope you can find all your work. They’re your babies.

    • Thank you. It really does sound like a funeral and the stories really are my babies. I worked very hard on them.

      I’m glad your sister was able to get her things back. I should look into more options then just the computer and flash drive.

    • Thank you. I am going to look into other options if saving my stuff. Hopefully I will be able to get at least some of it back, but I don’t know.

      I’m glad that your sister was able to get her things back!

  7. Sorry to hear about the flash drive problems, but it is all too common an occurrence. While regular hard drives make noises and act funny before they fail, flash drives give no warning. They just die. And don’t believe anyone that tries to tell you data can be recovered from them for any amount of money.
    I will make a couple of suggestions. These days, I use a combination of flash drive and DropBox on my local machine. BTW – I do not work for DropBox. I’m just a satisfied customer.
    When you install the free DropBox client on you computer, it makes a folder called “Dropbox”. Anything you put in that folder, including subfolders, is automatically backed up to the DropBox cloud servers. I make it a habit to work from my flashdrive and each time I finish working on something, I save to the flashdrive and then immediately “Save As” to the Dropbox folder.
    That way, there are actually three copies of my Work in Progress at any time. The chances of my local hard drive, my flash drive, and the DropBox cloud all going down at the same time are all but nil.
    On a hardware note… I used to do computer consulting and there is one piece of advice that has not changed in more than twenty years.
    All computers die. The average lifespan is about three years. Yes, there are ten year old computers still working and yes, there are systems that die in six months. The average is still about three years. Figure out how much you are willing to spend per month for a working computer. Put that amount in a savings account and every three years, blow it on a new system.
    I hope this is helpful. Good luck!

    • You sound like you know your stuff. Thanks for all the suggestions! When I start writing again I’m going to back up to DropBox as well as my flash drive. I may check out GoogleDocs as well.
      My computer will be two years old in June. A couple months after I got it it got a virus on it. My sister fixed it and put Norton on it and it worked brand new. Then when we switched to Comcast, everything went down hill from there. My computer refused to pick up the wifi, my flash drive broke, and I had to pay to get my laptop completely cleaned out. Now the battery is shot. I may be buying a new computer (or at least a new battery) sooner then three years. Which is sad because I really like Lucy. 🙂

  8. Tough to read about someone losing so much personal work. I can commiserate in that I have lost plenty over the years myself and that ultimately was what caused me to start backing things up. Having 2 or 3 backups certainly can’t hurt.

    I am sorry for your loss.

  9. Reblogged this on starstolenwritings and commented:
    There are not enough reminders in the world to make a backup of your creative efforts. Sad to say, I don’t have a flash drive (currently), but I do use Dropbox… about once a year.

    So basically, this is my friendly reminder to everyone, myself included, to get your material backed up somewhere so it has a substantially-lower-risk of being lost to the ether. I’ve definitely lost a few stories over the years (the saddest loss is definitely Dear TImothy). Don’t let it happen to you. Back that thing up!

  10. I almost cried myself when reading about your loss. I’ve been frustrated by losing chapters before. I can’t fathom losing as much as you have. Sadly, I think all anybody has to offer here are condolences and advice for how to safeguard your work in the future. I don’t have much to add for the latter, but I offer you the former in abundance. Best of luck.

    • Thank you. I just have to make sure that I keep a lot of copies. I did have two copies if everything, but my computer got a virus so I lost one copy and just never backed it up again.

  11. Sorry to hear about all those stories. My husband supposedly has my computer on some automatic backup schedule to a remote hard drive. I would be completely devastated if I lost anything I’ve written (even the crap – it’s all a lesson in improving my craft).
    Also, thanks for the like on my blog. I appreciate the love;)

    • That’s good that you have that back-up. A few of the things in my flash drive were crap, but it was crap that I created…which made it good crap. 🙂

  12. I had a scare like that a couple years ago when my computer died… I had most things backed up on a flash drive, thankfully, but 100 pages of my NaNoWriMo novel were gone… I eventually managed to get that back, too (minus all the commas, I have no idea why) but now I have an external hard drive where things are backed up, dropbox, and a regular flash drive, plus most of my fan fiction is posted on websites and/or my blog. Reading this post, honestly, I’m going to update all my backups, just in case! 🙂

    • I’m glad that you were able to get it all back. It’s a scary thing…especially when you know that you’re not going to get any of it back.

  13. My heart goes out to you Rachel; I am insane about back ups of back ups because my Dad loved to “fix” the computer when I was growing up by wiping it’s hard drive.
    I hope your muse guides you through the rewrites, I swear they seem to remember the story better than we do 🙂

    • Yeah, I think everything will work out for the better. I’m sure when I re-write some of the stories, ideas will come back to me and better ones will pop out of no where. I’m trying to think of it as editing with no real drafts. 🙂

  14. I was sorry to hear that you lost so much of your work. On the flip side, writing for me is not really about the finished work so much as it is about the journey of the characters. I have favorite stories that I tell to people I meet. I rarely ever tell them exactly the same way. If you were really impressed with your stories, then you remember what as going on. It’s just a matter of revisiting it with a fresh pen and notebook. Look at it as a chance to make them better! Another positive thing is, you don’t have to worry about writer’s block. =) Writing is a labor of love. So love to write whatever it is you’re writing. Even if it is for the second time. Keep your chin up and plow on.

  15. Hi Rachel…thanks for stopping by Good Golly Miss Molly…I was sorry to read about all the writing you lost, but I just completely retyped a couple of novels (like I was using a typewriter instead of a computer) and although they were “finished,” I was surprised at how much better they were after the re-typing. It gives you a chance to tighten things up and find places to change. Maybe a blessing in disguise.

    Good luck with all the computer fixes!

  16. Hi Rachel,

    This happened to me TWICE. First time, a virus was sent to my Mac, and I had just enough time to email my four biggest novels to myself. Everything else, about 15 stories worth, was gone. The second time, I spilled water on the keyboard, and the entire computer burned out. I was told that the information could be recovered, but it wouldn’t be cheap. I still haven’t done it. Nowadays, Google Drive and email is my friend. I even occasionally send copies to my screenwriter best friend for safe keeping, as well as my mother. Bottom line, my documents are being kept in several places now.
    You will recover from this; I know it seems crushing now. Much to my amazement, though, a lot of my rewrites came out better than the originals!
    Notebooks are helpful, too. 🙂

    • I am so sorry that happened to you! 🙁

      But lesson learned, right? I use Drop Box, a new flash drive, and I e-mail it to myself. I might take a look at Google Docs, but I have to say that it’s kind if a pain saving and re-saving the same thing in different spots. But I know I would be kicking myself later if I didn’t. 🙂

  17. I’m pretty impressed with how much you had written–even though it’s all gone! I would probably go on a mad rampage breaking things in my house that I’d feel bad about later. Glad you just wrote out your sadness in a blog. It’s safer that way.

  18. And Oh My Word, bless your heart. I cried too. I know how you feel, it happened to me. Then I learned to use iCloud. All of my books are there. They update each and every time I write on them, and it is wonderful! Google Docs is available too and does the same thing except, if you are co-authoring a book, both of you can work on it at the same time. I use it too. Always have backup for your backup. The unfortunate part, we usually learn this after we need it. But start now. Best of luck!

    • Exactly. It’s sad that you don’t realize certain things until something goes wrong. I certainly am keeping backups of my backups!

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