Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Oh, The Humanity

Well, it's been a horrid last couple of days here at Chez Hades. There was one real disaster, that in retrospect was not as big a disaster as it seemed at the moment, but nevertheless demoralizing, and one barely avoided disaster that could have killed someone but didn't, but still freaked out everyone but me. I figure you should be thankful about barely avoided disasters and not focus on what would have happened had they actually occurred. In short, no one is dead.

I was supposed to have Running Red done before Sunday, and was actually on track to have it done Friday evening. At some point midday Friday, Word freaked out. It did so quietly and without fanfare. When I opened up my manuscript file, it had somehow reverted back to an unchanged file. A file sans revisions. Even though I had saved the file and double-checked it, 300+ pages of revisions were just gone. The file didn't disappear, it somehow REVERTED. And it didn't just erase the changes from the last time I had opened the file, it reverted back to the original file from a week ago. A file that I had opened and closed multiple times. Apparently from my research this is an impossibility. It can't happen. There is no mechanism by which this can occur. So I am left with either a supernatural explanation or Secret Window, Secret Garden scenario in which I did this in a fugue state to sabotage myself.  I'll leave it up to you to choose which is more likely.

So we backed up all the Word files on an external drive (680 of them!) and uninstalled the apparently possessed version of Word and replaced it with Word 2010. Things seem to be normal now, but I'm taking no chances. I back up everything hourly to the cloud and a flash drive.

I started over because there was nothing else to do, but that means most of the revising I'm doing I'd already done multiple times over the past several weeks and I have now looked at the manuscript so much that it's starting to make no sense. It's Groundhog Day, but directed by Frederico Fellini after a meal of hallucinogenic toads and absinthe. I'm back up to chapter 31 out of 55, and it's going sloooooowly. And after I do the revisions, I've to proof it again. (I do have a second proofer going over it too, but I have trouble releasing control.)

Hopefully the next time I take a break to post, it will be to talk about the new project, the one that was supposed to start yesterday, and Running Red will have gone to the big formatting barn in the sky. In the meantime, there is this, which I found delightful. (Warning: if you are easily offended DO NOT PUSH PLAY. And don't say I did not warn you. Because I did. ).


  1. now that was funny


  2. If this proves to be correct and it is now too late to make use of it, you may feel free to strangle me, disembowel my corpse, and create a festive nesting area for Pete out of my rib cage.

    Now that I've heard the details of your accident, there is one thing it could be. Have you at any point saved your manuscript in two places? It is quite possible to have Word get confused and grab, say, the copy you left on your flash drive a week ago - or have been saving ONTO your flash drive the entire week because you did that once.

    Do you see what I am saying? I have run afoul of this before.