Something very odd is going on with my documents lately. It started off on the weekend. I was surrounded by family but neck-deep in homework with Margie’s course. So I moved myself into the office and worked on my desktop. I saved my doc onto a flashdrive and when I got to the desktop pulled it up and started editing. I spent six hours plugging away, saving faithfully. Then thunderstorms started rolling into the area. So I click on the little disk icon and save it. Then close the doc up and go to ‘My Documents’ and copy the doc from my C: drive onto my flashdrive so I can take it to my laptop and keep working without having to rely upon the electrical grid. The little warning saying “a document named XXX already exists, do you wish to replace?” I confidently hit Y.

Big mistake. Huge! (yes, I’m channeling Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman there.)

I hadn’t realized that I hadn’t been saving to the C: drive all that time, that it was saving the new sections onto the flash drive that I’d pulled it up from. So when I copied the doc from the C: drive, I copied an old version and replaced the new work with old.

OUCH! All that work lost. I was nearly in tears. Ok, I’ll admit it I WAS in tears.

A couple days later, something similar happens. I downloaded my ms from googledocs – my Editing Partner and I have been using that so we can easily comment on each other’s works. And again work away. Now I use Mozilla. And it says in my Mozilla that any downloaded docs are saved to my ‘My Download’ folder.

That’s not where it saved it.

I discovered – the hard way – that it saves it in the ‘temp’ file. The temp file that Mozilla clears whenever I exit it. Yup, another day’s work gone.

Today … well, I download the latest edit from Googledocs – and very carefully save it to the proper folder on my C: drive. And begin to edit it – stripped out comments and adding sections. (Yes, I have the backup feature turned on), and I saved it regularly. Yet somehow when I went to look for it later, all the changes had disappeared.

I have NO idea how this one happened. Now admittedly I was probably preoccupied, distracted – at one point I had about 3 IM’s going – which is why I usually never turn on my IM during the day. And I was comparing my new doc with the original doc, and had several of Margie’s lessons open for easy reference. But multiple programs/screens are nothing new to me, and usually don’t challenge me. Back in my tech support days it was normal to have to have about 15-20 programs open in order to help the clients.

So what happened to all my work? I haven’t a clue. But I find it annoyingly ironic that the teacher who used to stress so often to her students to SAVE THEIR WORK (back in the old days it was – don’t forget to hit F7 every ten minutes!) has screwed up so many times this week.

So learn from my frustrations. Check the drive and the folder and the document name before you hit save. And make REALLY certain that you DO want to REPLACE the doc. Stay on the safe side – rename the doc. It’s better to have an extra copy than none at all.

And all that is what Margie would call … walking the dog!

Don’t forget to Save …
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2 thoughts on “Don’t forget to Save …

  • October 12, 2007 at 9:37 pm

    Oh Leah! I’m so sorry that you’ve lost so much work. I don’t know what to tell you about the saves. I have lost work by accidentally saving the documents in the temp file and I’ve also overwritten a new doc with an old one. It’s so very frustrating. It seems like you can never get those words back. I don’t guess there is any way around it except to be careful, and there are always going to be times that we hit the wrong key. 🙁

  • October 13, 2007 at 7:38 pm


    Oh – the frustration!! Sorry to hear about lost work. That’s painful.
    After every writing session, I email my WIP to myself then save ALL the copies (WIPtitle, 17000words,Oct13) in a folder on Yahoo. That way, whether I’m on my laptop or desktop, I just open up the most recent and continue. And if I lose it, at least it will be on the yahoo server. I know it’s not the most efficient way, but so far (knocking on wood!) it’s worked for me.

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