Julie's Quest

Hello, and welcome to my blog. My blog is about the trials and tribulations of writing, where we celebrate successes and commiserate our near misses. We tell it like it is here and will do our very best to help you on the road to being published and pick you up after the rejections (they will come!) Whether you are a professional or amateur writer you will find something useful here.

I hope you enjoy reading my posts and will visit again soon.

Happy Writing

Julie Phillips - freelance writer - member of the Association of Freelance Writers - member of the Society of Authors

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Why Bother With Back up?

As anyone with a computer who has ever had it crash on them, whether through virus or chip failure and who hasn't backed up, the answer to the question why bother backing up? will be clear: If you value your writing and don't want the inconvenience, expense or loss of all the words you have so carefully crafted to be lost then back them up!

Backing up only takes a few minutes out of your busy schedule. You can do it how you like: on disc, in a cloud, external hard drive, memory stick - but just do it! My little computer crashed recently and had to go to the computer doctor where he was stripped down to factory settings (sounds rather painful doesn't it!) It could have been much worse if I hadn't have backed up, double and triple backed up all of my important files. They're on two memory sticks and in the cloud! I dread to think what I would have done if I hadn't backed up.....

Now, I only have the inconvenience of putting a couple of programmes back on there and the whole affair cost me £30. I am now considering buying an external hard drive so I can back things on to there without having to fiddle around with finding the right disc.

On a good note my article about setting up your own writing group is in the new issue of Writing Magazine, featuring quotes and advice from the wonderful Penny Legge and someone called Simon Whaley - whoever he is ;0)

So, spend some time this month backing up your systems - your writing and sanity depends on it.

Julie

19 comments:

Martin said...

Sound advice, Julie. I have four external hard-drives, in total. The Cloud is a good option, too.

Rebecca Alexander said...

I absolutely agree, but can I suggest that you don't simply back up then leave your backup with the computer? In the event of a house fire you could lose both. I email myself drafts of my work each day - it costs nothing and Gmail holds all my documents. Cloud storage, definitely useful.

Jarmara Falconer said...

Yesterday, I suddenly thought I must back up all my editing in case... Then forgot all about it. This morning again before I start work I must, once again I forgot. After reading your posting I have done it. Thank you for reminding me why I must back up my work

Simon Whaley said...

I use Dropbox for some of my important files for backing up (www.dropbox.com). It creates a 'Dropbox' folder on your computer, and also in Dropbox's Cloud. Whenever you change your original document, a copy is automatically backed up to the Cloud (assuming you have Internet access). So if the worst happens to your computer, there's always a copy accessible from the Cloud - on any computer you can access the Internet on!

Teresa Ashby said...

Thank you for this timely reminder, Julie - I haven't backed up for ages! I must do it today! x

Kath said...

Hi, Julie. I always email my stories to myself at the end of each session.

Yvonne Sarah Lewis said...

I bought an external hard drive for about £50 that automatically backs up data files when the computer is idle for 5 minutes. When I go on holiday I unplug it and secure it off-site. I've a large number of picture files, so copying them to memory sticks or DVDs was getting impossible.

Diane Perry said...

I sometimes go over the top Julie and although I shouldn't, I print things off in fear that they may be lost. Great post and good advice. What on earth is the Cloud? Sounds very magical, not the sort of thing I have heard with anything to do with IT before
Di xx

Julie P said...

Hi, Martin,

4 external hard drives - wow! I'd better get started!

Julie xx

Julie P said...

Good point, Rebecca.
Julie xx

Julie P said...

Well done, Jamara - at least you know it's safe now.
Julie xx

Julie P said...

I remember you mentioning Dropbox before, Simon. I'll hve to look into in.

Julie xx

Julie P said...

Hi, Teresa - fantastic! I'm like Jamara, though and I get easily distracted!

Julie xx

Julie P said...

Hi, Kath,

Great idea!

Julie xx

Julie P said...

I think that anything that backs up automatically has got to be a bonus, Yvonne!

Julie xx

Julie P said...

Hi, Di,

It's like BTs digital vault - you upload a copy of your work to their server and they keep it (if you suscribe to them)

Julie xx

Rob Innis said...

If you have Windows 7 buy a very large external disk - as a backup takes up a lot of space! And be careful of listening to the likes of Penny Legg and that Whaley fellow...

Julie P said...

Hi, Rob,

Thanks for that - much appreciated. Yes, you have to watch that Whaley bloke! Can't speak much about Penny as I don't know her well and I;d better be nice to her as she gave me some wonderful quotes for an article!

Julie xx

Ruby Badcoe said...

This is definitely very good advice! I had my computer crash on me a few days before my thesis defense, and not all of my files had been backed up, so you can just imagine the nightmare of having to re-do a majority of it. I’ve since learned my lesson, and have my most important documents backed up in several places. I have an external hard drive, and I also store a lot of my files in online storage, so that I can access them from any computer without having to bring my external hard drive around and risk losing it.