Google Driving

Philip HarrisChatter, Theatre, Writing AdviceLeave a Comment

I use Google Drive to sync data, including my stories and related docs between various machines. I have backups as well, of course, but Google Drive lets me work across multiple machines very easily and provides an element of redundancy that’s reassuring – at least until last night.

I’ve been doing the final revisions to The Ordeal (Season One, Episode Thirteen) and was planning on doing one final pass last night before sending out the first submission. When I came to edit the file, it was gone. After much swearing I managed to load a temporary file into Word that gave me an almost up to date revision but I lost a couple of passes of edits. Today I was able to track down a more recent version of the file but I’d already spent an hour re-revising the manuscript. I’ll now have to go through the two docs and make sure I haven’t missed anything critical. Not particularly convenient.

What happened was that, for some reason, when I saved my revisions on Machine A, Google Drive deleted the file on Machine B (presumably ready to update it) but never copied the new file across. I have a weekly back up and technically the file wasn’t ever lost but it still wasn’t an experience I’d recommend.

The convenience of Google Drive is a godsend for anyone trying to keep documents in sync from multiple locations – but don’t assume it’s a substitute for a regular backup strategy and even if you’re running regular backups, think about the worst case scenario and see if you’re comfortable with the amount of work you could lose. In my case, I could still lose a week’s work and that’s not good enough so I’m going to increase the frequency of backups one way or another.

In other news, Ann and I went to see the Pi Theatre production of Terminus by Mark O’Rowe. I would highly recommend you go and see it but I can’t – the production has finished. It was excellent though.

Terminus is a series of three interwoven and interconnected monologues, set in Dublin. The first story involves a teacher trying to rescue an ex-student from a gruesome back street abortion, the second features a girl rescued from a fatal fall by winged demon (made of worms) and the third tells the story of a man who sold his soul for a beautiful singing voice but is too shy to sing, so has turned to serial murder instead. So, dark stuff and lots of sex and violence – this definitely isn’t one for the kids.

The cast for this production, Leanna Brodie, John Emmet Tracy and Pippa Mackie were all excellent and although it might not sound like an enjoyable way to spend a damp Vancouver afternoon, it was.

We’ve seen a couple of Pi Theatre productions now and they were both excellent so check out their site.


[The article Google Driving by Philip Harris originally appeared on Solitary Mindset on March 20th, 2013]

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