Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Murphy's Law And Writing - Be Like a Boy Scout and "Be Prepared"

We have all heard the expression, from our good friend, Murphy. "If it can go wrong, it will go wrong." You know, there are some days I wish Mr. Murphy had kept his mouth shut. But, unfortunately, he is correct. As a writer (although I will have to say in pretty much every profession out there, we have to be prepared for the bad things happening to our writing when we least need it to happen.

One of the things I try to tell many beginning writers is to take as many pre-emptive steps to insure that if something does go wrong, you have a back-up plan or something to save your but. This is even more important now that we have moved into a digital age.

We rely on the internet, our computers and email for everything. But what happens if you have a deadline and your computer crashes? What happens when the internet crashes and you need to get a document to your editor across the country? What happens if your memory stick with your full manuscript is lost or damaged? What are you going to do?

Is there a single correct answer to fix this problem? Can we literally insure that Mr. Murphy will not come diving into our lives uninvited? Probably not, but we can be a little more prepared to insure we don't fall too far behind.

As we start the month of May, I want you to make some serious plans to insure that your writing is safe and sound and you have those back-up plans. Take the time in the rest of the week to do a couple of things, just to play it safe.
  • Print off that current work in progress so you have a "hard copy" 
  • Save that document in multiple locations - on "the cloud", in emails, on USB Drives (anything will do).
  • Determine a back up plan in case your own personal computer crashes.
  • Do you have a back up email address in case you need to get in touch with someone or they need to get in touch with you?
Even if this does suck up some of your writing time, you will feel much happier in the long run.

So, anyone want to share their horror stories of Murphy coming to visit your writing career?

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