From the first time I ever gave it a shot, every year that I’ve done NaNoWriMo, there has been something to come up and make things complicated. Every time, something bad happens that threatens to derail the entire plan. I thought that it was just bad luck the first time, but I soon discovered that I could almost set my clocks and calendars by it.
The first time, it was being basically booted out of where I was staying—a situation that I’m choosing to call a “constructive eviction” as I really was afraid for my safety. Exactly a year later, things got a little different and I wound up with a computer to work on!
…except it blew up. The hard drive went up in smoke and the smoke damage delicate stuff inside the refurbished machine, and I had to try something else. I didn’t get a darn thing done for Nano that year.
The following year, things seemed to be going well. I had a plan, I had an outline, I had the skeletal first zero-draft from the first place I’d been living, and I had my own apartment.
…I also had a catastrophic injury to my left knee—remember that series of rants and lawsuit? That one—and my computer was somehow lost by my now-ex (not why things ended, but I don’t feel like getting into it. Some of you know the deets already, and some of you don’t, but the burden of an ongoing investigation means that until further notice, my lips are sealed). He arranged for me to borrow a friend’s tiny netbook until he could pay off my PC (I hadn’t even finished paying it off when it happened) and then replace it outright. That year, I finished.
I thought the luck had improved by then, that it wouldn’t happen again, but then—this was last year—my battery crapped out. I had to replace my warranty and then replace the battery. I managed to pull it off—and I managed to win, though the draft wouldn’t be finished for another couple of months.
My third shot in a row comes up in a few weeks. The plan was to back everything up, find my notes, make sure that the batteries and things were working properly, and then get ready to get started by creating the Scrivener project .scrivx files. Nothing going wrong here—
A strange error message popped up and I asked a friend what tests I could do. I wasn’t seeing problems in any of the scans I did, so we went to these tests on a CD-ROM.
The first test didn’t detect my hard drive.
“What is that?” I ask with a face resembling this. –> (O_o)
“I don’t know! I’ve never seen that error code.” Delivered with a “the hell is this” awesomeface sort of look.
“How the HELL does this keep happening to me?” I laugh. The pattern was coming back.
“Okay, we’re gonna try something else then,” Seamus*of course the names have been changed to protect the
guilty innocent suggested, and we rebooted to the disc and tried something else.
This time we didn’t get an error message initially. We instead got system beeps. Like…loud, painful, I-actually-shouted-“HELL IS THAT NOISE?!”-beeps.
“I don’t know!”
My computer issues are kind of like patients in a teaching hospital: never a dull moment.
BEEP. Lag. Successful reboot. FREEZE.
“THAT could be the hard drive.”
Flash forward to now: I’m backing up my important data to Skydrive and an external enclosure. It’ll likely take days. A jar near my printer contains the money that I am saving for a new hard disk drive. The documents are currently safe, but backing up obsessively is the way to go. I’m not losing my work…again.
That's something that someone who is trying to make a living at this whole ink-slinging thing doesn't need to hear/see. After having yet anouther instance of a total crash on my machine, I caved and got Memtest. ...then I spent a day and a half waiting for a chance to figure out how to use it. After calling WTF at a friend of mine, we got the damn thing running. The scan was still going on when I left the hangout, but as I got meds ready and did some minor straightening up in the pantry, the scan finished.
The RAM is clean.
That's the good news.
The bad news is that means the problem is unequivocally the hard drive.
I'm too hopped up on my medicine, mild sleep deprivation, and a Bob Marley soda to really have a stronger reaction than "Well, shit." Luckily, there shouldn't be TOO much of a problem--there's a solution across town and all I have to do is to remember to get out there and get it done. Whoot.
...now to pray that nothing goes wrong before Nanowrimo begins.
It ain't so much there.
Now, I plan to see what I can do about it, but the truth is, I gots no fuckin' idea what I'm doing.
Basically I'm gonna poke it with a stick until it does something.
*gets out pokin' stick*
This message brought to you by LjBeetle. ^_^
After the shenanigans that were this morning's events, I got home to realize that the unseasonable temperatures meant that my cold-water-and-cold-oven thawing technique had just given me a case of MEAT SLURRY instead of thawed burger beef. I threw that beef straight down the trash chute—it is, after all, ×deadbeef—and fired up my machine. I might have news on what's causing my usual external client to fail, and Jeannie's updating AGAIN. Considering that the nuke wiped her drive state back to 2010, I'm surprised that the updating hasn't been more aggressive than it has been.
I've skipped my nap. I feel tired and dreadful, but once this is all updated I need to make a grocery run. I'm out of almond milk and beef now. I'll have to do without the almond milk, but I need beef. And I do mean need. RAI NEED BEEF. Adding to the confusion is the fact that I keep pushing glasses up on my nose—except I'm not wearing my glasses and so I'm just sort of pushing air.
Considering making an actual physical run tomorrow instead. But the craving for a burger right now is something unholy. Good thing I sank $23 into a new pass today. I suppose I could look at the bright side, and say that I'm contributing to the local economy…
And in a feat of "Screw You, Microsoft-user-based blogger HAHAHAH" the updates didn't work. So it looks like I'm going to have to figure out how to get the backlog into the new format.
…I'm taking a flippin' nap. Maybe when I wake up in an hour I can gimp down to the store and get some ground beef. Without the world spinning. (Maybe I'll sleep off what feels like another panic attack coming on. I can't feel my face, and that's usually a sign I need to chill the fuck out.)
The data's safely backed up elsewhere—recent newsbreak: IT'S ABOUT 30 DVDS OF DATA. The nuke button was pressed—
You don't normally associate pictures of grass glittery with dewdrops with the button that basically says "Hi, I see your computer's totally fucked. You want me to fix that?" Seeing as I was going to have to wipe anyway, I decided to see if the onboard system wipe would work.
*two hours later, and a LOT of Windows Updating*
It seems to have worked. The majority of the functionality is back, but I don't have a lot of my programs. And the ones that I do have aren't behaving like I'm used to them doing. I figure, I'll run the updater tools until a quarter to one, and then go to sleep, take care of it later.
…Improvement, yes. But still tedious work. So cue the Tosca. (Which isn't even on my computer right now, thanks to that nuke.)
Jeannie, as that one guy says in Snatch, is proper fucked.
The threats were a series of items: trojans, spyware, and something with an abbreviation that went “drp.” In hindsight that abbreviation was not too far off—the stuff set my computer to derping and now its couch is totally borked.
So now I'm waiting for a huge file backup in preparation for a total wipe and reinstall. Sweet Mercy, I have a lot of reinstalling to do...
Posted via m.livejournal.com.
Since I still don't have the internet, I've gotten my mitts on the mobile app. I've also begun planning the return of the internet. It occurs to me that I might have to replace the thing myself-- it would be cheaper and if I could get it across somehow without it seeming like a move...
Of course first I have to find my computer cable. I'm not sure what I did with it.
Posted via LiveJournal app for Android.
So, yesterday I posted an update, just a little one—nothing much besides the misadventures of apartment cleaning—when what should happen than I receive a comment in Russian.
I look at it for a moment and immediately think to myself, Babelfish. I placed both the link and the comment body text itself into the box—
“Oh, hi, avast!” I say as the blocker jumps into action and kills the attempted malware hijack.
I never expected LJ to get hit with these types of attacks. That said, people—watch out for strange links. See if the user exists. The supposed user that hit me with this link had existed for, oh, a day and a half.
I didn’t hit the button. If this happens to you guys, I’d recommend doing the same.
Then scan your machine. Just to be safe.
I should have seen it coming, especially since I am currently using pirated interwebs.
It took three computer restarts and then two browser switches—mostly between Firefox and Opera, three back-and-forths altogether—before I was able to get online.
That said, I get to work on my video gaming if it explodes.
Getting to the library every day would be a pain. It would be such a pain that if I were to lose my connection entirely I would go a couple of weeks without a machine in order to figure out something else.
…maybe not. I kind of need to work on things like my resumé. And that is hard to do without a computer.
This, unfortunately, means that I will be unable to get online for at least two weeks. I have to wait at least until my hours go up to something higher than fifteen over a stretch of two weeks.
I remember in December when I complained about getting fifteen a week. Now, staring down the barrel of only fifteen in TWO weeks, I feel as though I've had a bit of perspective drilled in.
This will be a long, slow two weeks.
Then again, maybe I could use the reset.
Until two weeks from now.
I've been eating really cheaply lately, making as much out of as few cheap ingredients that I can. Spaghetti witha white miso and tomato sauce isn't half bad, actually, especially when you saute the garlic for the sauce…holy crap, did I ever get sidetracked.
I finally passed that godsdamned algebra class. Now I can take classes relevant to my degree. Yayzors.
I went to the Ludo concert on the 28th. Man, it was sold out, the entire bottom level was a (slightly faily, 'cause the security don't stand for it) mosh pit. It was kind of fun to watch people get dropped by security with a bubbly "Thank you for crowdsurfing, please come again!"
Then again I have to think of things like this: this is a blog. I could talk about my new shoes if I wanted to, and it really doesn't matter just how interesting I am at any given moment. If I'm read, I'm read.
On that note, I've started paying closer attention to what I save and spend. Since I'm saving up for a computer (again!), I have to be careful on what money goes in and out. A few of my favorite splurges have gone out of the window; I haven't bought a book or a CD in a long while. For my music fix I pretty much stay on Last.fm and Pandora.com. As far as books are concerned I practically live in the library already, so that's covered, too.
Classes? It depends on just how slow the slow season. I'm going to keep an eye out on a few apps that I've got floating around at the moment, but I'm not sure which of these will pan out. Whenever one does finally manage to work out for me, I'm going straight to my manager and offering a bit of a deal: if he wants me on reserve as a housekeeper, that's the plan. If he doesn't like the sound of that idea, then I will simply hand over my two weeks' notice. I can't keep working at that job if I can't get decent hours.
(Furthermore, the satisfaction level is dropping steadily right now. I have never seen morale at the hotel as low as it is right now. If things keep up the way that they are right now, then there won't be anyone left by New Year. Hiring is hard enough right now; there aren't that many people who actually want to do housekeeping work, and the number who stay around after completing training is lower still. There are four of us that are assured of our positions right now, and of those, three are definitely out at New Year. That leaves—well, me. If my offer pans out, though, I'm outta there, too.
What a life,eh? Good thing that I've got other things to look forward to on those blissful days where I don't work.
I've been randomly floating around on forums for most of the day; when I wasn't it was because I was floating around the café eating a cheeseburger and popcorn.
I still haven't gotten any writing done; I keep getting distracted by forums, whether it be here or on GaiaOnline, more recently Last.fm.
I've also been distracted by the fact that each time I come here, I can't immediately tell which computers have XP!Office or Vista!Office installed, and saving from one to the other and back, even when I do a formatting check to make sure that I've saved in the proper format each time, sometimes I get the conversion issues.
Then there's the fact that some of the computers seem to be having USB hub issues—power surges and all that—so sometimes I can't even find an open machine with USB ports that will work properly.
For the most part, the day's just been kind of a mess.
Apparently, when I backed up some of my documents, the hard drive was too far gone to pick up on a few updates to it. At the very least, I can remember what I did and probably get it down better than what I did before. I remember in the initial draft of the updates, the writing was actually kind of clunky and unwieldy, so when I get it down I will have to clean it up and go again. I remember getting it down as fast as I could manage to make my fingers go.
The upside is that, especially where a certain pivotal scene is concerned, I can make it flow better and make it make more sense in the context of the story. But…I'm going to have to give up quite a few off days to catch up with where I left off on this one. It was at least twenty pages of standard single-spaced typing.
But if I just rant about it, I won't catch up to where I left off, will I? It's time to get started again. Especially now that I do in fact have the absolute perfect playlist for this mission.
Until I have a working machine my updating will be erratic at best. I'm not sure when I'll have the chance to really be active again but until then I do have a contingency plan. I'm keeping my brain working by using some old technology. It's called a spiral journal with a hard cover and a Zebra F-301 pen. (There's a rant in there somewhere about writers' neurotic habits but it's going to have to wait until I've actually gotten it written and junk. No use in getting too far ahead of myself, right?)
The hard drive didn't survive long enough to finish it. Or even start it.
It kind of went explode, and by 'went explode' I mean with completely gnarly smoke effects, too.
It's a good thing that I'd ordered the new drive a day before it went explode. I'd be up the proverbial creek if I hadn't.