There are many stressful experiences for writers: a looming book deadline, negotiating a contract, reading the first batch of reviews. But I am certain there is one stresser that outbeats all of them, one that I had the pleasure of experiencing this weekend: a computer virus.
If you're Facebook friends with me and you got that suspicious message from me on Friday, I'm sorry, and extra forgiveness if you opened it thinking, "Dana wouldn't send me anything suspicious" and got the virus yourself. Once your infected, the blasted thing sends messages to all your friends, from you, telling you to click on a link. I got a message from my friend, I clicked, and thus began the panicked, stressed out, ulcer-and-gray-hair-inducing weekend.
Last week I read a post about the importance of backing up. I thought it was a good post and I was proud of myself that I do most of those things. I save everything to a USB and e-mail myself the important documents once a week. But like I said, this happened on Friday, pre-back up.
Thankfully, I caught it in time and thanks to my trusty anti-virus, anti-spyware, the helpful people at Microsoft and a half bottle of tequila, I'm back online and all my files seem to be in tact. But I could have just as easily lost a lot of work. A whole week's worth of writing, gone. So please, go to Joe's blog, read what he has to say about all the ways you can avoid losing your writing. Don't think you're immune. I have an anti-virus, I have a firewall, I don't open strange e-mails from people I don't know, and yet, I still managed to get a virus. I guess I could always go Mac...