Katherine Hayton | The lost story
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18 Mar / The lost story

An easter ago my computer threw a fit and decided that the hard drive was corrupted.

I spent a tough three days wondering if I would ever retrieve my completed manuscript, but eventually it was saved. I did, of course, have a backup copy – I’d be a fool not to – but that was a hard copy which would have required me retyping the whole blasted thing, and I was not in the mood.

Eventually I got my laptop back up and running. It turned out my hard drive was perfectly fine, but windows 8 had decided to go looking for the boot disc in the wrong place, and I had to tell it that the drive was a different type of drive before it could see it as a drive.

For these, and other good reasons, I no longer trust my laptop computer to hold my work-in-progress manuscripts.

Instead I’ve taken to uploading the precious wordies into the cloud. Directly after producing them. At least that’s what I do at home.

I also have a laptop in the office, which I sometimes use to write on in the mornings, or break times. Not often, because my preferred occupation during break times is gossip or staring into the middle distance, but sometimes.

It’s quite a rigamarole to hook up my mobile phone so the laptop can connect to the internet (and it drains the battery super-fast) so I usually carry a copy of the WIP on a USB stick that I use instead.

So at home I save it into the cloud, and at work I save it onto the USB.

Except, I also have trouble remembering to save the work in two places when I’m at home, so for the past couple of weeks I’ve only been saving it on the USB stick.

But that’s fine. It’s not like it’s going to corrupt or anything. I even carefully go through the steps to remove it safely from the computer each time. Often.

And I was right. That little USB stick didn’t corrupt. Not while I was in possession of it.

Unfortunately, I’m no longer in possession of it.

Not in my bag, not in my computer, not in the car, not at my desk.

Possibly on the street, possibly on the bus, possibly safely in my hand in another dimension.

So, in my pursuit of safety I’m now working on the second draft of my novel a lot more quickly than I thought I would be. Especially considering I hadn’t yet finished the first draft.

Oh, and if anyone sees a blue USB stick in the greater Christchurch area with a manuscript in progress, and a slew of embarrassing photos, please feel free to drop me a line.

By Katherine Hayton in Katherine Hayton's Blog

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