Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Are You Backing Up?

I don’t mean are you backing up while driving? I mean are you backing up what you write?

A couple weeks ago, my thumb drive kicked the deathly can. Yep, there was no going back. It was gone, taking up the grave. I didn’t worry too much. All I’ve written is backed up in multiple locations. I’ve even printed out a hardcopy.

Phew! No worries here.

Yet, soon after I started writing my first book, I had a super scare. Something happened while I was writing it. I don’t remember what, but I thought I’d lost everything I’d written so far. I can still feel the lump that formed in my throat, and my heart stop beating for a brief moment. It was terrifying.

At that point, I knew I had to start backing up my words.

My fried thumb drive would have been worse if I didn’t have copies of my stories in other places. By golly, I would have died if I lost it all. I would have definitely cried non-stop for weeks. The waterworks would have swollen my eyes to puffy reddened slits.

I bring this all up to encourage you to save your writing in multiple computers, thumb drives, email them to yourself, or even Dropbox.

Have you ever had an I-lost-everything scare? How did you deal with it? Are you obsessed with saving your works in tons of places? What is your advice with backing up? 

Writing. Jewels.


  1. I used to work as a research assistant and for a project, I read through all the doctoral dissertations ever written about a particular test. My favorite dedication on a dissertation thanked his wife, his mentors, and then pronounced a pox on the people who broke into his van and stole his laptop as well as all the backups and printed out copies of his dissertation and basically made him start over. My first question was: why would you keep all the backups in the same place?

    The moral of the story is: don't keep all your backups in the same place.

  2. I back up religiously! I have several places all the copies of everything I have rests. I keep copies of everything on my netbook, on external drives at home and offsite! I've lost too much valuable data, years and years ago to be messing about losing stuff anymore! One of the worst disasters I went through was losing 9 months worth of journal entries about 15 years ago...let me say that my heart drop when the realization sank in that I had lost that data. Since then I have my data backed up and all is peachy!

    Great Post, Julia! :)

  3. My first draft goes to a good friend, in paper. So, I have those. THEN I have like a million thumb drives.
    My biggest fear is that my computer will die, and I'll have to try and figure out which thumb drive is the most recent . . .