Bad laptop

No matter what kind of writer you are, we all experience a bad day now and then.  Sometimes our muse goes on vacation and trying to write anything is like trying to cutting down a dead tree without an ax.  But that’s only one of the many things that can go wrong on a bad day.

I had a good idea for a blog series {Scene writing}and was working on my first post when my computer decided to do an update and there was nothing I could do about it.  I threw up my hands in frustration and yelled at the computer.   But it didn’t care if I called it names, or lost over an hour of hard work, it was determined to finish its task, BAD LAPTOP!   Although I tend to be an optimist, I wasn’t feeling anything close to optimist at that moment.  I was thinking why in the world does Microsoft have to do so many updates and why now?  Why can’t I figure out how to turn them off?  And if that wasn’t bad enough it, my muse got up and left the building!   If you’ve ever lost some of your work due to a computer error, update, or crash it’s enough to make you pull your hair right out of your head and scream obscenities at your computer, throw it out the window or both.  But this wasn’t the first time I’d lost some of my work due to a computer problem.

I got my first computer in the early 90s. and had no idea how to use one, so it was trial by fire per se. But once I got the hang of it, I used the computer to write poems, stories, and most everything else.  What I didn’t know was they could unexpectedly crash. I was writing my very first novel and was almost finished when the computer decided to give up the ghost and die.   I learned a very important lesson that day  . . .  computers only pretend to be your friend. They entice you with their wonderful features, the ability to provide unlimited access to all kinds of knowledge, entertainment etc.  But if you don’t take care of them properly they’ll rebel and quit working when you least expect it.  Just kidding. . sort of!   Having a computer is kind of like being married.  You fall in love with all the features but then you have to live with all its idiocracies.

But regardless of all the problems, updates and computer crashes I’ve experienced over the years as a writer,  I’d rather use a computer than a typewriter any day of the week.  I like being able to see the words spread across on the screen and form themselves in paragraphs, pages and end up as a finished story.  I also enjoy having an unlimited knowledge base at my fingertips, multiple windows open at the same time and of course being able to email, skype, chat, to say nothing of facebook, twitter, Pinterest.  So maybe computers are really our friends, despite their enticing and rebellious nature. Maybe the key to having a good working relationship with your computer is to not cuss at it, threaten to throw it out the window when it misbehaves but to simply give it a hug and say like we do to our spouses  I love you anyway.

J. Wallace



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