« July 2001 | Main | September 2001 »

August 24, 2001

Pass From Planet Relish

Oh, how slowly the work creeps back. Today a 41 day e-jection from a feghoot sent to Planet Relish. Too many other good ones had already crossed his desk.

August 16, 2001

Fantastic Performs To Expectations

Today came a 41 day rejection from Fantastic, returning on exactly the day I expected it. Wow. Now if only they'd bought it...

August 15, 2001

Speculon Pass

Never fails. Today came a 68 day email rejection from Speculon, passing on a short-short I'd sent him back in June. Always remember: vent a little, and the universe will try to prove you wrong.

August 13, 2001

Back In The Saddle Again

Well, the new database is up and the data in place. Found some interesting gaps here and there as well. A story fragment that I've got a title for, as well as a word count of about four hundred words, but that's it. No matching file. Oh well. There were also a number of miscellaneous story fragments (some not much more than a title and a paragraph or two, others several hundred words long) that never got listed, and some records that never got updated. Here's another useful feature of this journal: did I forget when that publisher sent me the check? Or did they even pay me yet? No problem; the journal helped me fill in a few dates that got left off (purely by accident, of course), and now I feel up to date. And that's half the battle.

Now if some of these blasted editors would actually get back in touch with me, I'd be happier. It's been over three weeks since I've heard back from them. C'mon, people! Summer's practically over. Back to work!

August 10, 2001

Take The Database Out Back And Shoot It

As it turns out, some of the files I'd backed up have escaped. While my writing is safe, I've lost all my email. Every single word from the past, uhm, three years, whoosh. I thought I still had those particular zip disks, but I can't find the friggin' things. They have been misplaced. The loss of the email doesn't bug me nearly as much as losing my address book. Damn, damn, and double damn.

Also missing some other miscellaneous things, chiefly my bookmarks file and a couple programs, one of which (Hypercard) is the engine for my submissions tracking database. The database is the only thing I run off Hypercard, and I don't have the installation disks anymore (long gone, long lost in two moves and a thousand miles). When I told her, Lisa sensibly asked me why in God's name I was using Hypercard in the first place, and the answer is: it seemed like a good idea at the time. 1995, which is when I built the thing in the first place, modeling it after the index card filing system described by the late great L. Sprague de Camp in his book Science Fiction Handbook, Revised, Philadelphia: Owlswick Press, 1975. Hypercard followed that index card system quite naturally, so that's what I used. A few years later, I found out that Bud Sparhawk created something along the exact same model. See, great minds do think alike.

Fortunately, I've got the Hypercard player. I can see what's in there, but I can't make any changes, and I can't add anything. In short, it's a lovely picture of my past work, but now totally useless to me, as I plan on writing more stories (I'd already written a first draft of a story since the backup, and it isn't on the file). I'm going to have to set up another database in another program, preferably something with a little more longevity this time, and rekey everything. Sigh. At this point, I'd like to offer a little advice to my fellow scribblers, and anyone reading this: BACK UP YOUR WORK! Stop what you're doing and go get a zip drive, a CD burner, access to a server, whatever, then back up your stuff. Do it regularly, ideally every time you write or revise something. In the old days, writers used to lose all their work in things like housefires and floods. Now it can happen thanks to a defective surge protector.

My only comfort at this point is that at least I didn't spray glue on my flat panel monitor. Heh. Poor Greg...

August 07, 2001

Houston, We're Totally Hosed

Well, I would've been if I hadn't just did a major backup of things. As you know, at the end of June I wiped my computer and put it back together again (see the June 27th entry for a reminder). For obvious reasons, I had to back everything up. Well, over the weekend the computer died, and I mean died hard. First the system froze, then came strange ticking noises from inside (as tho' there was a team of tiny prison convicts desperately trying to tunnel their way out), wrapping up with the disturbing message "Some data has been lost." Escaped, more like it. All those little files, electronic versions of Steve McQueen, James Garner, and Richard Attenborough, trying to figure a way out of my hard drive. Well, it worked (sort of). Had to get the hard drive replaced; the new one is 30 gigs, which feels so...excessive. But hey, it wasn't that much more expensive than what an equivalent replacement for the original would've cost. And happily all the important files on the machine had been backed up from before. I've lost some email, but that's all right. At least, when I consider the alternatives, it's definitely all right.

August 01, 2001

Neverworlds Pub

All right, so basically I blinked and July ended. I hate it when that happens. Summer classes have ended here at GrowingGrowingU, which means that the university has now gone into slow mode. There aren't any dorms on campus, so we didn't normally have the numbers of people "hanging out" that you see on a lot of colleges, but you can tell the university is quieter than usual. For one thing, it's currently a lot easier to get a parking space.

Neverworlds, after a brief hiatus, is back, with my story "Outlive the Consequences" as the new Story of the Week (and in a related note, the NAW's own Linda J Dunn has the Story of the Month: "Driving Blind in God's Own Country."). One thing I rather like about Neverworlds is that they provide multiple formats for their stories. Straight HTML, yes, but also PDF (for people who like something relatively 'permanent'), a PDA format for your Palm, and an audio version (which sounds vedy interesting). Go check 'em out, whydoncha?