So, last year, I participated in NaNoWriMo. While I didn’t hit the 50,000 word target (I only managed about 20,000 by the time December rolled around), I resolved to keep at it.
And I did, sort of. While I lacked the initial zeal that characterized my November, I did continue at it, picking away at it gradually. By late March, I was around the 25-26,000-word mark when I managed to do something monumentally stupid.
I had everything saved on a USB stick, which I had needed for some geeky thing or another, and I had copied its contents to my desktop computer. All well and good so far, right? Well, when I was finished with whatever it was that I had needed the USB stick for, I copied everything back to it, and then deleted the backup (followed by my usual immediate, instinctive, and admittedly neurotic emptying of the Trash).
Of course, silly me, I hadn’t noticed that the transfer hadn’t quite worked, and worse, while I had thought that there was something on my desktop, even if it was incomplete, I made the disheartening discovery that there was nothing.
Half a novel’s work, lost in a flash because I didn’t make sure that a file transfer went through properly. I felt like a grade-a moron, I assure you. Honestly, I was pretty much devastated. all that existed of that initial draft was the first 10,000 words or so, and that is in another province (“Sorry, Dave, but your early draft is in another castle!” says Toad).
So, from memory, I’ve been reconstructing the plot. While I haven’t done much in terms of the actual writing of the thing, I’ve been plotting things out, providing myself with room to flesh things out that needed to be fleshed out, and hopefully I can fix the pacing issues that were present in the initial draft.
But tonight, I actually started re-writing the first chapter, and I won’t deny that it feels great. Hopefully I won’t drop the ball on it again.