I don’t think I’m alone in this, but it’s still embarrassing…but first, some background.
My first novel, “Renaissance,” Book 1 in my Autumn In The Desert series, launched on August 31, 2016, about 15 months after I first started writing it. It was a big milestone for me, because I was not a full-time writer during that period. But in mid-2014, we decided to focus more on writing, and I spent a great deal of the next several months writing nonfiction books. In early 2015, I got a brainstorm for a novel and jumped into it.
This in spite of the fact that I had a partially written science fiction novel lanquishing in the cloud. I’d started it as a real ‘spare time’ project in 2012. It required lots of research and thought, and I had nearly 82,000 words written at the time I embarked on Autumn In The Desert. I only felt I had time for one novel, so I put the science fiction on hold.
In the meantime, my laptop died and I replaced it with a Mac. I’d long wanted a Mac, but we’d never had enough money to swing it. I figured a MacBook Pro was all I needed, and when I got it, I was in seventh heaven. Just over 3 years later, I decided I would write two novels at one time, so I needed to find (I really couldn’t remember where the files were) and get writing on my science fiction novel again.
I finally remembered they were backed up on the cloud (since the PC was no more), and I went to retrieve them, only to discover that they were in the wrong format. The YWriter software I’d used to write the novel was only for PCs. It took me a lot of research, time and effort to discover how to retrieve the files. But finally, I was able to get most, if not all, of them into Scrivener on my Mac.
Technology is changing so fast these days that it’s a real challenge to keep up with it. You blink, and you’re left behind. This was a real lesson to me about not putting anything aside for long. I felt like NASA sitting on mounds of data from space missions in floppy discs, with no way to read them.
As an indie author, I have to learn all kinds of skills that traditional authors can foist off on someone else. I’m not complaining, but sometimes it leads to a panic attack, as in when your 82,000-word manuscript appears to be lost forever. And it’s pretty embarrassing to admit it didn’t occur to you that it might be a problem. But all’s well that ends well, and I’m pretty much back on track. I hope I learned my lesson.
Have you ever had an embarrassing problem like this because of rapidly changing technology? Please feel free to share in the Comments section below. I don’t want to feel like the only person to ever do something like this…