Sunday, 25 January 2015

Digging Out Those Forgotten Stories...

Today I was thinking about my old stories, and how none of my teenage attempts survived- I do regret that.

When I started writing again in 1999 (after many years of not touching a keyboard of any sort)  I began using a Brother Word Processor - much better than a typewriter as I could move words around and carry on without having to retype the whole page.

Recently I retrieved a number of my old floppy disks whilst I was sorting through some old boxes. They were from the time I got my first computer that was running XP.

(Fortunately I can still read them as I have a floppy disk drive that just plugs into a USB port.)

They didn't have any full length stories on them, but there were ideas, and on one a copy of the articles I wrote for a (now defunct) online magazine. I even became their 'Lifestyle correspondent'. :-)

Despite no stories on these disks, I know that I have another set somewhere in the house, including half of the first novel I tried to write- I got to 40,000 words. Along with these are all my printed pages, research notes and images.

No doubt they're all in a box somewhere in a cupboard probably behind other boxes. I didn't have my office area then, so they got packed away in one of our major move rounds...

Meanwhile I do have a couple of short stories that I need to do something with, and I do have those on my computer, plus on memory sticks, a disc, and there's also a printed copy - okay that's overkill, but I won't lose them completely like those earlier efforts in an unreadable language.

Looking back at my old writing is strange. I can see how much I still had to learn then, but also, there were glimmers of the writer I've become, and there were also the first hints of my 'voice'.

I'm still learning, and quite honestly it's important to do so...


Have you ever lost your early writing, or do you still have it?










10 comments:

Patsy said...

I still have all my 'old' stuff - but I've only been writing for about 12 years and have done almost all of it straight onto the computer.

Carolb said...

That's fortunate, Patsy.

I've only been using the computer for 10 years, so I was quite late going online at home. But I'd hate to go back to the old system now. :-)

Diane said...

Yes, the first story I ever had accepted. I can't find a copy of it anywhere - hard copy or electronic. I do have everything else, though, and after clearing the loft at my old place, I've discovered I have every other magazine I've been published in too - dating back to 1985 ...

Rosemary Gemmell said...

I love finding parts of old stories and ideas but I have lost at least one story that I remember - probably because of changes in computers and storage discs. For instance, I can't read a zip disc I still had as I don't have a reader for it!

Carolb said...

That's sad that the first story you had accepted is the one you can't find a copy of, Diane.

I'm sure your personal archive will show how much everything has changed since 1985.

Carolb said...

So far we all seem to be missing or unable to access one story we remember, Rosemary.

Hopefully one day someone will create a device that will allow us to access all these storage systems we can't get into. :-)

Wendy's Writing said...

I've only been writing three years, so it's all new! (unless you count my teenage diaries!)

Carolb said...

At least you can be sure you'll have copies of everything you've written since then, Wendy. :-)

lizy-expat-writer said...

I have all my poems in two small hardback notebooks, and my stories and novels on computer plus copies on pen-drives. After last year's panic when my computer died suddenly I am even more careful about making copies.
But ... first drafts that have segued into something completely different years later - those I have now ditched as too awful! :D

Carolb said...

A writer can never have enough back-up copies- just in case the computer dies like yours did, Lizy.