I found the DREAMING THE DEAD manuscript!!!

Sometimes it pays to clean your desk.

There it was, a printed copy of the incomplete manuscript with all my notes, all the background stuff, all the words.

And then I noticed the manuscript was printed in one of my earlier Scrivener formats. Maybe two years ago.

So I dug through the printed version, did a search for a unique word in the manuscript, and did a content search for just that word, and found…

Here’s a tip: If you have a book with a working title, NEVER in your filename surround that working title with quotes, as in “Dreaming the Dead.” Not even if you’re working on a Mac, which will allow you to name files pretty much anything.

Found it, fixed it. Banged head on desk.

“Looks like meat’s back on the table, boys!” (Movie version of Fellowship of the Ring)

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About the author: Novelist, writing teacher, on a mission to reprint my out-of-print books and indie-publish my new ones.

12 comments… add one
  • Margaret May 19, 2018 @ 15:31

    If that’s the book I think it is, I’m extra happy you found it. Didn’t know you lost it, but glad it’s now found. I’ve used that rare word search a time or two myself.

  • Rebecca May 17, 2018 @ 13:14

    Fantastic news!

  • Kari May 17, 2018 @ 11:11


  • dragon May 17, 2018 @ 10:16

    I am sooooooooooo glad you found it!

  • Vanessa May 17, 2018 @ 8:11

    That is such good news. That was a lot of work to lose.

  • Deb Salisbury May 15, 2018 @ 13:35

    Woohoo! That’s wonderful!

    • Holly May 16, 2018 @ 7:07

      Thanks. 😀

  • Michelle May 15, 2018 @ 11:57

    Dude, what? I didn’t know you’d lost it, but that sounds like a nightmarish experience. I am so glad for you, and excited to read it when you’re done!

    • Holly May 16, 2018 @ 7:07

      I was NOT happy…

  • BJ May 15, 2018 @ 8:40

    Naming files is one of those HUGE headaches that I have dealt with over my IT career. Every operating system has different rules on which characters they allow, and whether those rules also include case sensitivity or not.

    I strictly use only letters and/or numbers in my file names, and the only “special” character I sometimes use is the underscore for spaces. Sometimes linux will treat those spaces as /%20 when displayed. It makes searching for a file name much easier that way.

    • Holly May 16, 2018 @ 7:06

      Yeah. Call me a convert to Letters, Numbers, Hyphen. (Don’t use underscores, because they’re more of a pain to type than hyphens, and having a standard separator character makes the odds of finding the file better.)

      • Reziac Jul 7, 2018 @ 12:47

        Having started my modern (vs IBM1620) computing life in DOS, I learned early on the pain of nonstandard characters in filenames. To this day I resist using spaces and multiple extensions (banes of the olden times), and try to name files so they self-sort.

        A trick for forcing top-of-the-list is to prefix the filename with one or more exclamation points. (At least, in DOS or Windows. I have no idea what nonstandardness lurks in Macs, tho as I recall in OS9.2 the Finder had …different… notions about how to sort files.)

        I do use underscores, as a “bigger” divider than a hyphen — kinda like comma vs semicolon, except for filenames.

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