The Crash of 2007

So last Thursday there’s me, sitting and doing the final rewrites of Extras. And I do mean final, because the manuscript is due to copyediting on Monday. (Yikes!)

Sitting with me is writing companion and corruptor of youth Maureen Johnson. We have a conversation that goes like this:

Scott: Dang! My computer is acting funny. I better reboot.

Maureen: Yeah, mine was acting funny before. This is the evil computer table.

Scott: Heh, heh. Hmm, this is taking awhile . . .

Ten minutes pass.

Maureen: Still spinning?

Scott: Yeah. You know what? I’m just going to go for a walk. You mind texting me when it’s done rebooting?

Maureen: Sure.

Scott walks to Broadway Panhandler. Looks at the coffee machines. Looks at the knives. Ten minutes on, a text from Maureen appears!

You now have a mouse pointer.

Yay, comes Scott’s reply.

He looks at the knives again. Wanders over to the Games Designers’ Workshop store and looks at tiny goblins with laser guns. Many more minutes slowly unfold.

You have a task bar, but no dock, comes fresh news.

I hate the earth, he replies.

Scott, you see, has not backed up the manuscript today. Yes, he is good and backed up last night. But the last two hours were smooth, flowing rewrites! And he doesn’t have time to piss around. This thing is due Monday!

More time passes. And endless non-time, a frozen hour, if you will.

Desktop icons are appearing!

Argh. On my way.

But not before looking at the knives at Broadway Panhandler again. Knives may be needed.

Scott returns to find his computer almost booted. He launches Mail, which takes another twenty minutes to grind into existence. Sends himself the all important Extras file.

Scott: I can’t tell you how much this sucks.

Maureen: I made you an appointment at the Apple Store.

Scott: You are like unto an angel.

They head to the Apple Store.

Genius-Bar Guy: Nothing can be done here. This hard drive is totally pooched.

Is this the end of Scooter?

Dark days for Scooter. And yes, my hard driver is named Scooter.

Genius-Bar Guy: But wait! Here comes TekServe to the rescue! (Or rather, they are a short cab ride from here.)

One new computer purchase and a short cab ride later.

Scott: Can you save Scooter, TekServe?

TekServe Woman: We don’t know. Your hard drive is pretty pooched.

Scott: *sadness*

TekServe Woman: *Smiles wisely, like a veternarian who has put down many a pet, and has seen sadness before.* Don’t worry. We’ll try. Are there any files in particular you need?

Scott: Hmm, maybe a . . . folder called “Extras.” (In which the manuscript has been saved every single day, showing the entire development of the work! Argh.)

TekServe Woman: Don’t you back up, dude?

Scott: Yes, every time before I travel. Well, except the last time. So, maybe last October? You see, I was waiting until the day we leave for Paris. Which is Monday. By the way, um, can you get this back to me by Monday?

TekServe Woman: *raises eyebrow* We shall try.

Scott heads home, saddened. At least he has a new 15″ G4! With a cool new remote control for playing music! (But he has no music, unless he rips all his CDs again.) And a great new version of Mail! (That doesn’t know his addresses, and has lost all of his spam teachings.) And wicked fast Wifi! (But Safari has none of his bookmarks . . . )

It is not the same. Scott works doggedly on the rewrite for Extras, but the larger keyboard is maddening! Key rewrite notes to himself are gone! It is a time of pain.

Then on Saturday, TekServe calls!

TekServe Guy: We have your computer. Your data has been rescued, and a new hard drive with that data installed!

Scott: The crops are saved! If by “crops,” I mean hours of hideous work!

Scott plunges back into the rewrites, full of joy. He is finished just in time to pack for Paris. The world is happy again.

Except . . . why are people banning Maureen? Stupid school boards who haven’t even read her book?

Don’t they know she made me an Extras-saving appointment at the Apple Store?

I am so calling TekServe about this crap. Maybe they can fix it.

First amendment good. Maureen’s book good. TekServe good.

Plus: Everyone go back up their computers. Now.

104 thoughts on “The Crash of 2007

  1. I know how you feel…its not an experience you want to encounter again!!

    Congrats on getting it done on time…just keep breathing! Give Scooter a pat for me, he was very brave!


  2. That sucks! Computers are so evil. As an aspiring writer, i can vouge for you, when you are in the middle of an idea, and your computer decides to be a total spaz and freak out on you, it is just enough to make you break out the hammer and take out your anger on electronics!!!!

    But i admire your strength in the said situation. And scooter was so strong at such a tramatizing time. haha gotta love it!

    But my real question.
    Will the Uglies trilogy be turned into movies?
    If so, who do you think will play the characters?

    An ansewer would be awesome. C ya lata

  3. Yikes! So glad you got your data back, Scott. My computer died this past weekend too, so I fully sympathize. (Her name was Wilma.)

    Yay for TekServe! Boo for the Bartlesville school board.

    Have fun in Paris!

  4. off topic to: i got pretties and uglies for 25%off yah*happy dance* 12$ for both score

    but im appled they where on sail being so good and all
    (specials was there too) already have it

  5. Scott, I don’t know whether or not you read your comments, but I’d really appreciate it if you read this one and got back to me on it [ ]. How long has the secret hour been around for in the Midnighters? Because according to science about 500,000,000 years ago days were only 12 hours long. Humans came around within the last billion years according to what we learned in Biology. I’m sure our days didn’t go from 12 hours and then jump to 24, the universe is expanding making us slow down, so within half a billion years there have been 12 other hours of the day [ex. 13 hour days, 14 hour days…]. I’m not sure when we started having 24 hour days… but anyway, when did the 25th hour come in in the book? Because if you were planning on a looooooong time ago, it may be scientifically incorrect [but, hey, I’m just a sophormore!].

  6. That was a very entertaining to read; hilarious! ;D
    Sorry about Scooter, but one good thing came out of you’re crazy ‘escapade’ – you saved Extras! Yayy.


  7. Ehmahgawd
    Just glad you saved extras…next time you get a new computer name it Maureen…fawesome.
    Maggie (wa or la?)

  8. la di da da i am soo bored but i read your post thing and it must suck about the harddrive thing pr whatever, and allso about the bermudz triangle which was banner cause some stupid parent person has a problem with homosexuality. not cool people can like who they want, anyway. yea hahahahahahahaha la di da da la di da da

  9. Aww, poor Scooter.
    My computers name is Phil. *in a whisper* He’s a little slow.

  10. lol, Emmy, so is mine! But mine, i named him myself, is F.S. (standing for Freakishly Slow)

  11. Oh no! Poor Scooter. Well, at least you saved extras. I should name my computer. Any suggestions?

  12. I think that just for that I’m gonna go dig The Bermudez Triangle out from the depths of my closet and reread it.

    and make a mental note to never bother visiting Oklahoma.

  13. I agree with Berkely’s post script way back in comment 17. THere is a bright side to banned books. If a book is banned, it just makes more people want to read it. I also have to say that the mother who wrote that letter is seriously paranoid. I though MY mother was overprotective. Parents can’t protect us from everything in the world. SHe needs to let her kid grow up. Sorry about the long post. i just needed to say that.

  14. OMG I’ve been reading the midnighters and they are SO GOOD!! I just started reading them this morning, i’m almost finished with the second one…. and now I gotta go finish them!!! 🙂 🙂

  15. ahhhh Shan!!!!!!!!!!! i finished Blue Noon a while ago, but 4got to write about it!!!!!!!!! OMG. i cried toooooo=( i cant believe wat happened to Jessica, Rex,Melissa, Maddy, the blue time…. there has to be a 4th book!!!

  16. Hehehe. I just read this. About 2 days ago my hard drive crashed also. Life hates computors.

  17. Okay, the date thingy says it’s the seventh, but here it is the sixth.

    Anyway, wasn’t yesterday Scott’s birthday?

    Happy belated birthday, Scott!

  18. “They form commissions trying to find the next one they can crucify” (It’s form Easy Silence by the Dixie Chicks.) This totally fits Maureen’s book!

  19. 😀 you are so funny
    my computer almost died on me, except my parents refused to do anything about it because it was my information being lost not mine, lol
    luckily i am computer savy, so i saved it

    and i am soooo excited for extras

  20. Happy birthday! I name pretty much everything. My laptop is named Xander, my cell phone is Ellie, and my iPod is Sarafina. However, sometimes I call my cat “cat”.

  21. By the way, Scott, I had nothing to do this afternoon so I made a list of 200-something thirteen letter words. I’m such a geek.

  22. scott needs to get back from paris to update his website! its been a whole week!

    hope your having fun with justine!

  23. Mostly I wrote them down if I found any in books, and I went through my sister’s vocab book; there were a lot in there once I added -ly or some other suffix to it.

  24. Hey Scott! Im FINALLY reading the Mdinighters series!!!!!! It is realllllllllly good. I haven’t taken my eyes off the pages. Im surprise non of the teachers tried to talk it away. Well I gues that was smart of them because people know what hapens when they take my book away. Not to mention wow to Cicley. 200 words?? I bet I could beat it…

  25. Scott should we put out the search party are lost….why haven’t you posted i’m soooo bored.

  26. Kayla – I KNOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! wwwwaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhh! i really do wish there is a fourth…sooner or later..


    guess what i just did? go on just guess ok i now you wont guess it so ill just tell you and scott i REALLY HOPE your listing!!!!!

    well im on a really BORINGIN VACATION in Atlanta Georgia with my family and my mom likes to do outdoors stuff so we went to this place called stone mountin… and their is like a lot of suff to do their so yea and well i wanted to ride this thing up the mountin but my dad was like its only a mile hike (not that bad if it wasnt raining!!!) and well it stope raining so it was ok but then we got to “almost the top and it started to like hail litterlay the rain drops were like the size of golf balls!!!! NOT KIDDING!!!! and i COULDNT SEE!! really and the “rain” (if tahts what u want to call it) was coming on a diagonal and the lighting wasnt far away (plus im a clutz i cant even like walk in a straight line on a flat sufface really not lying to you i fell in the hallway comming out of my friends bathroom once and i tripped on grass (well many times actually) and so yea im not corrdinated) and it was really steep the part we were climing and my shoes were to big and they were conversos and they have no traction AT ALL!!!!!! so lucly their was a building on top of the mountin but it was frezzing in it and i was socked and hungry.

    and i askend my mom if we could just take the trolly thingiey down and she was like if we did that we would have to walk like 3 miles to get to the car so we had to walk back down the mountin but the like only good things was 1. i didnt fall and 2. their was the cute kid that was talking to me when we were in the building and i new he liked me the way he look and i went into the bathroom cuz they had a blowdryer thing and i looked in teh merrior and i was like omg i look like crap and i was like wow if this kid likes me now imagion what he would think when i looked good!!!! lol

    so you try walking up a side of a mountin in POORING RAIN!!!!!!!!!!! good luck with that thats my storry of the day lol sorry for the long post but i had to tell you 🙂

    scott you NEED NEED NEED NEED NEED NEED to post i was just gunna wait to post next when you put up a new blog but you havent so yea i hope your computer hasnt crashed aging that might suck even moor then walking up the side of a mountin in pooring rain (but it only evens out because you have Extras on that computer) 🙂

  28. ok sorry for 1. dubble posting and 2. my first post is like way way long sorry 🙁

    any way my MP3 player is Betty, my cell is Richord and, my computer is Zepher lol i like their names hehe 🙂

  29. Ouch. So heart attack-making.
    And now I have your manuscript. And you have it too. Haha.

    Zee-Sensei (who is totally invited to the Thousand Faces Party)

  30. make sure extras stays in tact. i want to read it sooooo badly. can’t wait for october…

  31. Yeah did the knives ever come in handy? I could use a good set of knives on a couple things

    J/K 🙂

  32. I’m still counting down days,until Extras come out Scott. It’s 130 Days counting today or only 129 days not counting today. THat’s 4 months 7 days (or 6) 11,232,000 seconds 187,200 minutes 3120 hours or 18 weeks. I think that I have some Dess in me. Kidding. I looked it up. But I will not stop counting! I’m still can’t wait!! EEEEKKKK!!! 11,232,000 seconds is too long! Jk lol

  33. AAHH! MY BRAIN HURTS! SO MANY NUMBERS!! wow, i wouldnt be able to figure out that much math…

Comments are closed.