Wednesday, August 20, 2008

On the Road, Day 2

What I'm reading: Death Angel, by Linda Howard

What I'm writing: Revisions--but technology raises its ugly head. Again.

A trip isn't really underway until you remember what you forgot. Tradition states that one passes M&M's when you cross state lines (or county lines in those big, long states). We did remember to buy them, although after reaching for a bag, I realized that the dark chocolate M&M's are in purple bags, so I grabbed one of those instead. It wasn't until we were on the road that I realized I'd bought PEANUT M&M's. I don't like peanuts. Lucky for me, I had a small bag of plain left over from our last trip in my purse, so I made do with that while hubby snarfled the peanut ones. Note: buy "real" dark chocolate M&M's before leaving Charleston on Thursday.

I also brought along my iPod. My OLD iPod. (Driver gets to pick what goes on with the radio, and since we were taking my car because it gets better mileage, and even though it was hubby's decision to take my car, and it was his trip, he still wanted me to drive). The battery life of that iPod is pretty sucky, so it didn't last the entire trip. (At which point I remember that my new car has a CD player; my 10 year old Saturn didn't). What I forgot was the charger. For some reason, the old iPod wasn't able to charge on a laptop. It was part of the territory, so I just carried the charger. Well, hubby insists that it should work, and he tells me I have to download new iPod updating software. So, I do. Then, that software tells me I have to download the newest version of iTunes. So I do. The laptop still won't recognize my iPod. I brought my little shuffle, so I still have tunes for the drive back. No big deal. Or so I thought.

So, I finally hunker down to work on my WIP. I get the Blue Screen of Death. This has NEVER happened on the laptop. Everything
starts up again fine, but after working in Word for about an hour, the entire computer freezes and I have to reboot. I'm getting a tad worried, and re-save everything under new file names. This happens several more times, and I'm getting very familiar with the file recovery options in Word. Another Blue Screen, and I decide working on the book is not meant to be.

When hubby gets back, I tell him I'm not going to deal with it until later, I have the files on my flash drive, and what are we going to do about dinner?
Sticky Fingers. In Mt. Pleasant, not far away, and we get to drive over the gorgeous Ravenel bridge. Great ribs. I don't eat much meat, but Sticky Fingers is definitely the exception. (Don't tell hubby, but that's part of the reason I decided to come along on the trip, despite all the extra poundage left over from RWA and Oregon.) And, not being in the mood to make decisions, we get the rib sampler platter for two. Yummy.

We get to the hotel, stuffed, and I use Norton's GoBack program to turn back time 36 hours, returning my computer to the state it was in before I did those downloads. Although hubby swore it shouldn't delete files, only programs, what does he know? He's never used it. It deletes files. Thank goodness for the flash drive.
And, I've been working on this blog, with a break to go down to the lobby for coffee for about half an hour. Word hasn't frozen. MAYBE things are right with the world. Reports from Florida indicate Fay has been pretty much of a wimp, and she seems to be hanging a sharp left, so we shouldn't have too much trouble driving home.


Ray said...

I think if I had your trouble with my computer it would make a very good paperweight. I have been having weird things happen to my laptop. My email folder in my Bookmarks moved down a couple of spaces for no reason. The same thing happened to the folder I use called radio TV and Print Media. At first I thought they had been erased. I know I don't have a virus, but I probably have gremlins in my computer. Hope they aren't the ones that escaped from yours.


Katie Reus said...

Yikes! You know all about my computer troubles, but you back up so you won't hear any advice from me ;)

How are you enjoying Death Angel?

Terry Odell said...

Ray, I'm almost certain it's a corrupt file and not the computer. It's still too new to relegate to paperweight status. I have a clean 'before' copy of the file, and a clean 'after' copy. I might just have to ditch all the ones in between and deal with rewrites. It was mostly tweaking, and re-reading it can only make it better.

Terry Odell said...

Katie - backing up a corrupt file doesn't help! But the ones I have at home and the ones I sent to my daughter were 'pre-infection' so I'm relatively confident I can start with those and not risk infecting my PC.

As for Death Angel ... hmmm. Linda Howard's an excellent writer. And I loved the relationships in this book. But ... I'm not into paranormal/supernatural, so halfway through the book, it turned into a very fast skim read. That's my own bias, and I think there were probably half a dozen other ways she could have written it to get where she got, but her approach was too tough a sell for me. I should have read the front jacket blurb first, but I was at the library and saw the book, so I snagged it without looking closely. If I'd paid for it, I might be less forgiving. But as for the writing -- she's definitely a master and I learn new stuff about writing with each book of hers I read. She also spoke at Nationals, and that was an interesting session.