I won’t mince words here:
BACKING UP YOUR WORK IS RIDICULOUSLY IMPORTANT.
In reality, there are no excuses for not backing your stuff up. It’s incredibly easy to do, and the pain of losing any amount of work is not worth the laziness.
When I worked on The Last Ginger, I was not good about saving. Last year my old laptop died with the entirety of my novel trapped on it, no recognizable draft in existence elsewhere. That was downright moronic of me.
Luckily I was able to grab the good old hard drive and all was well. But here I am a year later, and I accidentally saved my shiz in some funky format because I AM TECHNOLOGICALLY CHALLENGED. This time I lost a month’s worth of the painstaking, miniscule edits that are a part of the finalization process. (Shoot me in the face plz.)
Lesson learned, finally.
I don’t care how new your device is or how much technological prowess you have. If you value your craft and the words that flow from your fingers, you will protect what you create. Back the stuff up.
Here are ways to back up your files:
On an external hard drive. I have one Frankensteined from my old laptop ( ❤ RIP) that holds a billion everythings. As much as a computer holds.
On a flash drive. These are like two bucks man. They’re easily lost (which is my issue) but also easy to manage and have on you all the time. Get one. Or seven. They’re only two bucks man.
Google Drive or some other cloud-based service. The cloud is free, man. (I always feel like I’m trying too hard when I use the term “the cloud.”) Every single night before you rest your precious little head to rest, upload your stuff to your Google account. Even if you haven’t written that day. Just to stay in the habit.
On another device. I don’t know anything about any devices other than the ones I’ve already talked about!
Now go back up your damn files. Do you have a lost work horror story? Tell me in the comments!
I began reading this book having been told it was like Star Wars meets Lord of the Rings. Even with those impossibly high comparisons, Dune blew my mind.
It’s the story of Paul, a duke’s son, whose family is sent to rule the desert planet of Arrakis. Arrakis has no water, no large civilizations — nothing but sand and spice, everyone’s favorite drug. When the duke is overthrown and replaced by his enemies, Paul hides out in the deep desert with the local Fremen and learns that the arid planet nicknamed Dune has many layers of meaning.
The people of Arrakis worship water, living their daily lives in suits designed to recycle their bodily moisture and rendering down their dead, because “The flesh belongs to the man; the water belongs to the tribe.” They live with a sort of desert mysticism, a science-cum-faith that indicates at a strong and ancient culture.
Paul himself is involved in a different sort of pseudo-magic. Trained by his mother since birth in the ways of the Bene Gesserit, a sisterhood whose ultimate purpose is mysteriously “to serve," Paul is skilled in extraordinary observation and manipulation. He is destined to be the Muad’Dib, the Lisan al-Gaib, the Kwisatz Haderach. He fulfills prophetic roles in more than one faith and develops the ability to see the future — although chaotically.
This is the basic story, but it’s as intricate as fantasy series powerhouses like A Song of Ice and Fire or Lord of the Rings. There’s so much I didn’t mention: the sandworms, the emperor, the Fremen, and all of the incredibly dynamic and unique characters. Only so much can be conveyed in a blog post.
The book was definitely as confusing as Lord of the Rings, where most of the time you know what’s going on and sometimes you just have to go along with the confusing stuff, and then when you’re almost at the end you realize there’s many appendices you could have been using the whole time. At times I had to reread passages or pages to make sure I understood or to confirm that I didn’t understand their meaning. However, very little of the story itself was lost to me on these little hiccups. And using the glossary definitely helps.
It’s hard to say what this book is like, because it’s unlike any other book I’ve read before. The Star Wars/Lord of the Rings comparison is good because aesthetically it definitely reminded me of Star Wars — the faded, clunky technology and peculiar landscapes and creatures. The story itself is more Lord of the Rings, inasmuch as it narrates the regaining of a lost throne, involves great journeys, and is so saturated in subtle mystics and complex fantasy cultures that the reader is sure the author has written much on the subjects that he hasn’t published.
All in all, read this book. If you like science fiction or fantasy, read this, as it certainly appeals to both categories. A story that will latch itself onto your heart; characters you love and mourn; layers of faith and feeling that will change how you see the world; an adventure unlike any other.
ode to penny
You sleep all day,
you sleep all night.
You sleep right through
the morning light.
You sleep right here;
you sleep over there,
You sleep all day
without a care.
You sleep on purses
And on laptops
You sleep on my
clean pants and tops.
You might try to awake
for a moment or two,
but soon you realize
you’re too sleepy to.
You sleep like a baby,
or rather, like a cat,
and the cat nap will become
a short baby nap.
You sleep on your back
Or tucked in a ball.
To all cats, a good sleep
and a good sleep to all.
first blog post
Please excuse me as I post several things, as I'm moving here from my old blog. Please enjoy this photo of my from when I was twenty, which served as my last author pic.