Saturday, January 24, 2009

This is All I Can Offer Today

I woke up early this morning fresh off a vivid dream. It ended on a bad note, me in an argument with a friend I've known since second grade.

The house was quiet so I decided to blog some quotes from a parenting book I'm reading that I found inspirational.

I copied the quotes into the computer's word processor. I was inspired to write so I began writing off the top of my head. Thoughts flowed and new ideas came out.

Fueled by a second cup of coffee (and still no food in me), I kept writing and writing. More and more ideas came to me and thing gelled.

I had wanted to write about this topic for over a year but just never sat down to do it. The topic was too huge and it had intimidated me.

Well today I was doing fantastic. I started editing the piece and paring my words down. I rearranged paragraphs for better flow. I found duplications and cleaned it up.

The document was too long. I figured it made sense to split it into three pieces. I opened another document and took took one third to the new document. I worked more on that one piece. I was torn about leaving the book quotes with the essay or whether to do a third blog post with just the book quotes. I left the quotes and essay together. It was 2300 words the last time I noticed.

Again ideas flowing, more tweaking.

All of this was unplanned, spontaneous. It was great.

But the time was approaching that I'd have to shut off the computer to eat some breakfast food, shower and leave for an appointment.

Husband was calling me, "The eggs and toast are ready!"

"Wait! I'm almost done! Really I'm coming but I have to get this thought down!"

I was thrilled. I hadn't had that kind of a writing blitz in a long time, one that went from unpolished draft to something that I'd actually share with others. I have so many blog drafts that need serious polishing that I'm ignorning. This one was going to be published today, that was the plan, to publish it when I got home from the appointment.

It was a great piece. Not a rant. Not a complaint. It was honest and maybe a bit too revealing about my own flaws but I decided I wanted to bare my soul about that topic. As I was finishing it I thought to myself that this is the exact kind of writing about parenting, an honest telling of a situation that I look for in parenting blog posts but seldom find. That is what I meant about wanting honest talk about parenting (not dirty laundry, not making fun of one's children). I was happy to have been able to finally write about this topic that is so near and dear to my heart.

Husband called again.

I said, "I need to save it!"

I had the two documents open and needed to save them. Rushing, I hit save, and hit the wrong key. I said 'yes' to replace the existing file.

And in that moment I realized what I did. The good document, the one I worked for two hours on was gone.

Replaced. The smaller less important, nothing special piece replaced the good one.

Just like that.

Poof.

I had no notes in writing, nothing to look back on to spark my memory about what I wrote.

The rushed way I wrote meant thoughts popped into my head, went through my fingers to the keyboard and then were gone out of my mind, on to the next thought.

I don't think I can recreate it. I don't recall all the content or the exact arrangement. It made sense.

I do know it was good, very good.

And I lost the book quotes too. I'll have to research those again and try to recreate them.

So instead of book quotes and a parenting essay from my heart you get this post today.

The crazy thing is trying to recreate that piece will be harder than writing it the first time. At least I still remember the main point I arrived at which I am going to put into practice in my real life instead of just thinking about it or blogging it. I should focus on that part, I guess.

(I raced to my husband and said, "Isn't there a way to rescue it from the cache or something? Something? Certainly there must be a way to recover it? He is trying a rescue software and we'll see what happens. The outlook is grim.)

2 comments:

mamak said...

OH crud! I have done this. a few times. Such a sick sinking feeling. I hope you can recover it. Oh tish. Christine, I am so bummed for you!-K

Kim said...

How awful. A friend of mine, an English major in college, once told me some adviced passed on by a professor: Never tell your story idea to someone else. You will lose it.

I guess that works even after it has been written.

I wish you luck trying to recapture the moment and the final product.