Friday, September 19, 2008

The Story of a Story

"If computers get too powerful, we can organize them into a committee -- that will do them in." ~Bradley's Bromide

One of the projects floating around my periphery, when I'm not revising One Night in Napa, is writing up a teaching story or two to submit for this anthology.

Interestingly, about 10 years ago, I wrote about 30,000 words on this topic, a collection of stories/vignettes from my early teaching days in Cleveland. Last weekend I went looking for it--and actually found a complete hard copy I'd printed out at some point. (Gotta love the forward-thinking moments we have every once in a while.)

Finding any kind of computer file that I could actually revise was a different story, though. I do still have about a dozen floppy disks sitting in an old case on my desk. Of course, my newest computer, and my laptop, both just have USB ports, no place for a disk at all. I have another, older laptop that DOES have a disk drive, so I checked out the files on those old disks. Lots and lots of stuff for school, lesson plans and handouts and such, but no story.


I do have the hard copy, which is good. But now I'll have to retype everything in (or I guess I could scan it...might give that a try first).

Of course, the deadline for this submission is less than 2 weeks away, which means this weekend I need to put in some serious time if I want to send something.

It was fun, though, rereading what I'd written all those years ago. Some good stuff, some horrible stuff, and a lot in-between. I hope I can salvage some and turn out a good story.

In the meantime, back up those files on USB drives...until the next storage device comes out and makes them obsolete as well!


Marianne Arkins said...

LOL... I know the feeling -- my first book was composed on a word processor, basically a typewriter with a screen!

Good luck this weekend!

Liz said...

In the end I only kept 3 scenes from early 1990's version of Playing For Keeps and even the scenes were extensively revised. I cringe when I look back at what I wrote.

Anonymous said...

I followed a link left on The Pinkfuzzyslippewriters left by Toni Sweeny to your site and enjoyed reading your blog very much. I can relate to the challenge of trying to recapture an earlier ms! My first was completed on typewriter with carbon copies, and one of the carbon is the only surviving copy! Others are on various types of disk, you name it I've got it and none are compatible with my current puters! LOL
DH keeps asking when he can trash the old puter with the 3 and half and 5 and 1/4 drives. I respond as soon as I've recovered all those files. (Like never gonna happen)
Just don't get me stated with the versions of word processor I've had to learn over the years. Anyone remember WordStar? Love the scanner with OCR! Now I only need time to do all the scanning!

The Scarlet Pumpernickel