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Dec 13

Case Closed

Following on from my last post where I detailed the tragic loss of THOUSANDS of words for a story that was due TWO DAYS after the loss, I’m happy to say the story is complete.

It’s a bag of dog shit, but it has a beginning and a middle and most importantly…an end.

Now comes the hard part – the slog through chipping away (broad strokes at first – the chainsaw approach) one piece at a time until I have something worthy of editing. When that’s done it’s time for a flamethrower and an axle grinder. Sometime after that down to chisels and a hammer…and eventually (and I use the word loosely as I have to get this wrapped up ASAP) I can sandpaper the minuscule cracks and apply a good coat of varnish.

…and then it starts all over again (albeit with more “Did I save? Did I? I should save again…once more can’t hurt. Hit the damn save button, you sodding numpty!” moments).

And although I lose words and motivation and hope when the dreaded “File not found” appeared, I think my story may be slightly better for it. Think of it as an enforced redrafting process. The main plot has been floating around my noggin for a while so that was stored away somewhere sensible (ha!), and the finer details had been written so recently they were still fresh in my memory. So I was able to recreate a lot but at the same time tweak as I saw fit (or when I couldn’t remember what I’d typed at that point last time). And while I’d love to have the original draft back (there were a couple of decent lines I couldn’t recreate), there will be parts of the new attempt that would have never seen the light of day if not for the File Missing disaster of 2016.

Now I’m not saying you should scrap your story, burn your backups, or eradicate your emails – you never know, it might help – but in this case I am glad I am a massive cockwomble who forgot to back up his work.

Doooooooooonneee!!

5 comments

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  1. Paul M. Feeney

    You’re too hard on yourself. Send it through once you’re reasonably happy, I’ll give it a read.

    1. Steven Chapman

      Cheers for the offer, will do! 🙂

  2. Patsy

    Congrats on getting a draft done, ready to start editing. I like my first drafts to be quite rubbish as it motivates me to sort them out. It’s a nice feeling to know that almost anything you do is likely to improve the piece.

  3. Lorraine Swoboda

    You’d have been doing all of the above to that lost version too. Who’s to say you wouldn’t have ended up with the same finished product, even though you started from somewhere else? Best of luck with it, Steven.

  4. Liz Young

    So relieved you found a way to retireve them from your brain if not from the net. Well done.

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