Friday, August 13, 2010

Humble Pie and Hard Drive Errors

Days since hubby deployed: 67
Days til return: 138 (approx)
Status of Completed manuscrip: um...well... (more later)
Reading: On Writing by Stephen King, Black Powder war by Naomi Novik (book 3 of the series)
Hours worked (paying job):6
Hours taxiing:2

So. I don't know about you, but I am SO GLAD IT IS FRIDAY. Insanity has reigned in the Dunne household this week. I cannot tell you how good it feels to be sitting in my comfy chair with my feet up and my laptop on my lap. And tomorrow I do NOT have to get up at 6:00. Nope. Maybe 7...but definately not 6.

It has been one freakin' crazy week. F- factor was WAY up there. It all started when I got this crazy idea that it was high time this momma did something for herself. It didn't look that busy at work, we had minimal time commitments (or so I thought), and there was this wonderful little online conference for writers of children's fiction going on. And, amazingly enough, it was free! I like free. I like writers even better. So I signed up.

It was to start at 6 a.m. on Tuesday morning. I had to work, but no biggie, I could bring my superfast brand-new laptop to work, and peek in when things were quiet.

When the first lull hit...I whipped open my laptop and typed those wonderful letters... and voila! FORBIDDEN Error 403. Well friggity-jig! Tried again. No luck. Checked twitter, my favorite news source. Elana's tweet reassured me that yes, they were working on it (God bless 'em), and yes, it would be up soon.

Treat a few more patients...check again...and YES! I got on!

But laptop froze. I shut it down and restarted it. Hard Drive Error. Restart. Hard Drive error. Missing hard drive. Restart. Hard drive error. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAACK!!!!!!!

Yup. She was dead. Done like dinner. With my recently revised query, my recently edited manuscript, and all of my recently started works in progress. GONE. I could have cried.

And so began the emotional roller-coaster that was my week. Point form:

*laptop dies (utter depression)
*get old laptop running (slight elevation)
*kids orthodontist appointment- in which I discover orthod. wants to pull 12 more teeth from 2 kids mouths, and add a $500 appliance to 11 year old's mouth (extreme agitation)
*visit with mother in law/step-father in law (even keel)
*discover daughter left blood testing kit in MIL's car (Are you SERIOUS?)
*log in to writeoncon and find queries and honest critiques(moment of weightlessness)
*Mark McVeigh's amazing live video workshop (happy rush)

~ 6 hours sleep~

*read/watch/listen to amazing panelists/presenters (giggle like a school child)
*tune in to Elana Roth's live blogging event (anticipation at the top of the big drop off)
*have query completely skipped due to word count not being appropriate (250 foot drop to the darkest tunnel)
*spend 6 hours taking kids to riding lessons and walmart-one of my least favorite stores in the world-(scraping fingers in the dark tunnel of doom)
*catch the last live event of the day- a live video presentation with the amazing and up-beat Daisy Whitney (start to see the light again)

~5.5 hours sleep~

*check in quickly before work to see how my posts are doing, and find some honest, good critiques, but none of those magical PMs (private messages, not prime-ministers)(go around turn and down short drop)
*work 6 hours, rush home to pick up kids, and drive 1 hour plus to youngest's doctor's appt-get good report-head to mall for retail therapy (exit tunnel start long hard climb again)
*get home, find out dog has peed on carpet, yell at dog (small downhill)
*put kids in bed and log on to conference just in time for super-wonderful Regina Brook's live video presentation and Q&A (with out-of-this world closing offer to remove attendees from slushpile? seriously?) (See sunset from the top of the biggest hill :) )

There's a lot more filler, but that's the essence of my week. Up, down, up, down. Phone calls from hubby-up. Conference ends and no PMs-down. Hugs from kids-up. Late for meeting-down.

As this was my first ever writers' conference, I had very little idea of what to expect. I got lots of kind, honest critiquing from people I'd never met, and that was good. I gave critiques too- which is something I found incredibly hard to do-and in doing so recognized some of my own faults. I met lots of new 'friends' some of whom are even following me now- on twitter and on this blog (yay! Hi! Lisa, Elana(you are truly amazing) and Melissa too! Eleven! 11 maaarvelous followers...ah-ah-ah-ah...). And I've still got time to meet more, critique more, and learn more before the site closes.

So on the whole it's been a positive experience. Humbling...probably at a time when I wasn't hungry for humble pie...but I'm not perfect and neither is my query letter. Yet.

Back to the editing screen. That is-IF I can recover my manuscript. Where did I put that memory stick?

Have a great night,


~Jamie said...

Ah that SUCKS about the hard drive! I am glad that you had fun at writeoncon , though!!

Lisa Potts said...

Wow, I thought my schedule was busy during the conference!

I managed to view all the live events, but I'm still trying to absorb all the other posts. The forums were great too.

Glad to be a follower!