Back It Up!

If it’s important, back it up. I learned that the hard way last weekend. My trusty thumb drive, aka, my portable office, died on me, causing panic of the worst kind. You all know the panic. The, oh my God, where’s my novel, panic.

Thankfully I had everything backed up with the exception of the chapters I was currently editing. My wonderful and very smart husband managed to extract the information. So I got those chapters back as well, but not before I chewed a couple of fingers into nubs.

Please back it up! I email everything I write to my Yahoo email account as I finish it. I also transfer it over to another thumb drive. This one never leaves the house.

I know it’s overkill, but I’d rather be a little paranoid than lose my work. I was still deep in edits on chapters two and three of my manuscript when my thumb drive died, which is why they hadn’t been backed up yet.

What do you all do as a back up?

Do you email work to yourself? Save everything 0n a CD? Print hard copies? Pay for an online storage site?

Do you have any other, more reliable, or safer suggestions?

16 thoughts on “Back It Up!

  • First of all, don’t ask me anything harder than, “Do you own a computer?”

    Secondly, I see you’ve quoted me up yonder. Thank you for that. I barely remember writing those words and by golly, I like it!!!!

  • Oh my! Thank goodness everything worked out in your favor. I probably don’t back up enough. I keep my novels on both thumb and hard drive. I also print a hard copy as I go. But as for my short stories, poems and blog post, I only keep a printed copy and a thumb drive.

    My hubs is always on me to back all of my writing up on CD and put it in our fireproof box with our important papers. But honestly I forget. Maybe I should get on that task tonight.

    • Maybe think about emailing to yourself too–that’s A’s advice anyway… 🙂
      Then you can access your email from any computer. My main thumb drive is always on me, which make me super paranoid about my purse being stolen. Yes, my husband always comments on how my thumb drive is more important than my wallet, etc.

  • As the brilliant A says, if you put your important papers in your desk, and a copy of your important papers in your nightstand, and the house burns down (or here, more likely, gets hit by a tidal wave), you’ve STILL lost all your important papers. Ditto the CD and thumb drive in the file cabinet or bookcase.

    I email everything to myself at two different email accounts and I store things at google.docs as well — which is really helpful in case my laptop dies in that same fire/tidal wave that took out the rest of the stuff. I can pick up with a new/different computer.

    Full disclosure: Theory and practice are different. But tonight I WILL, I promise, send everything over to google.docs, just like I said I always do….

    • Doesn’t Google docs have a word limit?
      I wish I could pick A’s brain about my blog. I want to make it so people that subscribe by email give their name.

      • Yes, it does. I know I had to break my NaNo novel into two documents for google.docs.

        I have separate files for separate chapters now.

  • Whew – I never thought of that! OK, now its time to do the email thing and whenever I get going on the mystgery book, it’s to a google.docs acct. Thankfully you didn’t lose anything!

  • I back-up to an external hd, a thumb drive, and online storage. I don’t think that’s overkill. Just the thought of losing all my writing makes me want to cry. And thanks for the reminder because I forgot to back-up yesterday.

  • Wow, so glad you got everything back. That would utterly stink if you lost it!! Whew!

    We have Norton 360, which backs up our entire computer several times a day. I have sent things to my email (the big stuff) and of course, some of it’s on my blog so I could always copy shorter things from there if I need it. Hopefully, I am covered!

    • Yes, the blog kind of acts as a back up too. 🙂 That’s how a found out the thumb drive wasn’t working, I tried to update my Dangerous Embrace page with the edited chapters. I got lucky–or–at least, I married well. 🙂

  • I am blessed to be married to a geek. He has me all set up with automated back-ups to an external hard drive. He also makes me email myself every now and then. Plus, he’s computer forensics certified, so even if my laptop blows in a hundred pieces, he can retrieve the majority of my data.

    I’m glad you got everything back!

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