Holy freakin’ wipeout Batman Scrivener saves the day

middle finger to PCWell, I finally got fucked by my computer. I was writing at a mcd’s and closed my little PC to go meet my huband at the gym. He was running (I’m still recovering from a cold) and I was going to write while I clicked off his laps for him. There’s a lovely chair with a foot rest in the corner on the upstairs track and I got myself all setup, opened my laptop and stared at a blank screen.

Now, I’ve always been one of those people that is a little too liberal with the F word. I like to say it. Alot. It’s my favorite word in the whole fucking universe. But, as I stared at my computer and silently begged for the screen to come to life, I was stangely calm. This continued even when the computer finally started up and I opened up scrivener to discover that two chapters had been wiped clean. Maybe it’s the lack of energy thanks to my cold or maybe I’ve found some unknown inner peace but whatever the explanation, I didn’t use the F word a single time over the next 90 minutes as I tried to recover what was lost. In a way, I feel kinda cheated.

Scrivener is a really neat program. It has lots¬†of backup features. And if you have dropbox, you’re even luckier because that program keeps old versions of files for 30 days. So, I had 4 places to look for the lost chapters. And that’s what I did for most of those 90 minutes, patiently working my way through tons of rtf files.

In the end, I recovered all of one chapter, thanks to the rtf files and 2/3rds of another thanks to snapshots, one of the lovely features in scrivener which creates uneditable copies of your work. If you rewrite something, and you’ve saved the previous version in a snapshot, you can revert to an earlier version or just use it as a reference. If I had taken a snapshot of the chapter when I deemed it officially finished, I’d have been able to restore the entire thing. But….I stupidly shut my computer without doing that. Or without creating a pdf of the entire book and emailing it to myself, which I always do when I change locations or go home for the day. Hopefully, I’ve learned my lesson and today’s writing will end with snapshots and pdfs.

Did I learn anything else? Why yes I did, thanks for asking. I learned that PC’s are unrealiable. Well, I knew that. You see, last night wasn’t the first time this computer has crashed. Twice before, it failed to turn on. I wasn’t as concerned though, because all my writing is stored in dropbox. I figured, if the computer was dead, I’d just go buy another. My husband, who uses a MAC and has always used MAC, has never had his computer crash. Ever. So, until I can afford to buy my own, I’m stealing his Macbook Air. Well, starting tomorrow. Today, I grabbed my PC as I was walking out the door. Fuck. I’ve really learned nothing, have I?

Learn from your mistakes and Write On,

Melissa

PS

My word count hasn’t changed much. I’ve been working, but most of Nov was lost to nanowrimo ( I wrote the outine for my next book) and to our annual trek to Disneyworld, a 10k on the east coast and some touristy stuff. I’ve been sick since we got back and it’s hard to write when you’re constantly sneezing. And cleaning the drippy stuff off your keyboard. And screen. And the table around you. And your pjs when you’re holding your laptop. The dog took care of herself. Now that I’m almost back to normal, and my next book is outlined, I’m ready to finish this sucker. My daughter comes to visit in ten days so that’s my new deadline. This time, I think I can do it. I tell you, I can zip out an excellent feature length script in no time at all. Well, 1-6 weeks and when I did a webseries I was writing a 22 page script a week for production. Switching to prose has almost been the death of me. And my husband. He’s tired of me saying fucking¬†almost when he asks if I’m done. So am I sweetie, so am I.

PPS

I didn’t use fuck in the title because I grew up watching reruns of Batman and Robin and I just couldn’t see that Dick Grayson cursing.

PPPS

Fuck. Imagine that repeated about a zillion times. Okay. Now I feel like myself again.