By November 2016, I decided the words National Novel Writing Month were a jinx. First the end of June, right before Camp NaNo began, my main laptop went poof. Since it had done the same thing once before and my nephew solved the problem by restoring it to an earlier date, I thought I’d go with a pro. I called the man that had replaced the keyboard earlier in the year.
I pulled out my smaller one and began working on it.
All prepped ready to write, I began on Saturday July 2, 2016 to write my Camp NaNo novel using my smaller laptop. The central air conditioning unit froze and the house was not cooling down. I thought maybe I should replace the filter. I closed the lid to the laptop, raced out the door planning to go to Wal-Mart and buy one. I spoke to my neighbor, and he gave me one of his. Thank you, I didn’t have to buy one. I struggled and wrestled until I got the filter in place.
With a sigh of relief, I sat back down ready to write. When I opened the laptop, it says in big bold letters, UPDATING BIOS PLEASE WAIT. I waited, and I waited—nothing changed. I sent a text message to the nephew—SOS HELP—and told him what it was doing. I packed it into the carrying case and ran over to his place. He tried to get it working, but nothing worked. I talked to the Best Buy Geek people, and they printed pages to help. Took the pages to the nephew, it still didn’t work.
I picked up the first laptop after July 4th and figured I would put the little one in the shop this coming February when I have extra money. I was so happy to have the computer back. Trying to match the writing back into the started pages was a nightmare, but I managed.
Everything worked fine. I put aside the writing for October for another writing challenge. I started a new story, which I had worked out ahead of time. Near the end of October, I began to think about the book I wanted to write for NaNo this year. I needed to do some research along with creating character information. Then four days before NaNo begins, the computer restarts itself saying it encountered an error. Okay, fine. I went back to work. It did it again. And then several more times. I worked with it until Saturday. I put some words on the page, packed it into its case and headed to see the nephew again. He managed to convince it to work. The laptop lasted until Tuesday night when up pops the same message. Okay, whatever is what I was feeling at this point. But when it restarted it had a different message with two options. First option-restart, second option-advanced options. I clicked restart over and over. It came back to the same page. Sigh. Took it to the nephew again.
Dug out the Kindle, but couldn’t remember how to get the Office program on it to work. I went with my Galaxy tablet and downloaded Microsoft Office 365 to it, which apparently, Kindle doesn’t play with. I tried to pair the Bluetooth keyboard I had for the Kindle with it. They refused to speak to each other. I resorted to using the onscreen keyboard then, fine. Slow, but I was still writing. I decided there had to be a better method. I looked online and discovered there are other Bluetooth keyboards out there. I asked the nephew, who works at Wal-Mart, whether they carried any in the store. He replied, “Yeah, a funky one.” I checked online some more and still didn’t see anything I could afford at that point. I went to the store and looked at the keyboard. It wasn’t bad, I liked it. I bought it and ordered a Bluetooth mouse online.
So, for NaNo 2016, I still managed to write 50,153 words using all the above tricks. On December 1st, I bought a new computer. If you want to see my set up for November go to my Facebook page.
Here’s the link for the personal page: https://www.facebook.com/KHAKIakaKathy.crouch
And the author page:
My website is more of a sort of blog. I like hosting book reviews on the blog. https://ckcrouch.com/
I can so sympathize with what you went through. The day before Thanksgiving (and 3 days before leaving on a cruise) my 3 month old semi-high end laptop crashed.
I did computer support for 20 years before I retired so I thought I could handle it – wrong. I tried everything to get the hard drive to work again even resorting to reload Windows. I finally demanded a new hard drive which I expected to find waiting for me when I returned from the cruise – no such luck. After fighting some more with big-D’s tech support I finally got a new hard drive.
I’m glad that things worked out OK for you and you were still able to write. Thanks for sharing your experiences – helped me not feel so bad. 🙂
The good thing was that I had a pretty good backup in the cloud and I still had my old laptop that I could use. I’ll never take backups for granted again.