Dealing with Catastrophe


Mine didn’t actually look exactly like this. The face on the screen would have been an improvement! Oh, and no cobwebs.

Let me tell you something: there are few things more traumatic to an active writer these days than the death…

…of one’s computer.

On Wednesday the 28th, I did some work, saved everything, then went to my sister-in-law’s birthday party. We left about 6:30 pm.

When we returned at about 9:30 pm, I went into the office to set something on my desk and noticed that there was a message on one of my monitors saying Windows had been unable to start. I figured it was minor and restarted the computer. It never booted up again.


This is my actual computer, lying to me.

With one exception. At one point I apparently turned the computer on and off four times in rapid succession, and this, it seems, triggers a failsafe disk repair. I was elated. I wasn’t even upset that the “repair” took over seven hours. A small price to have my right hand back.

I don’t suppose it will surprise you to know the “repair” didn’t work. (The use of the ironic quotes should have tipped you off as early as the last paragraph.) In fact from that point on the hard drive wasn’t even recognized. I went into the BIOS setup and it wasn’t even listed as a boot option.

Studio shot of a handsome young man feeling relieved  against a gray background

Full disclosure: As with the illustration of the PC above, this is not actually me. (I am, as you all know, much younger and way better looking.)

There were several days of frantic research, and a good friend from my local writers’ group came through with a functioning drive that he wasn’t using. He got it installed, and I got Windows 10 back on it, (his had run 7). There was a good deal of updating, software reloading and probably a couple of curse words, but I’m writing this post on it right now.

So the ending, just as in all the best books, appears to be a happy one. Still a good deal of work to do to get it back to where it was, but one of the nice features of the newest Word is that it automatically saves everything to my OneDrive, so no work was lost.

Which is really good news, because things are starting to click in Cleanup Crew #3. But enough about all that negative muck. I’m rising from the ashes. Besides, I’ve got something really cool to tell you about.

Craig Hart Releases Serenity #6

47319313_519389901907562_4007182685914005504_nThe newest Shelby Alexander thriller, Serenity Betrayed is now available for preorder on some rinky-dink website called Amazon.

If you follow this blog you’re probably familiar with Mr. Hart. He’s one of my closest friends, my writing partner on the SpyCo series, and now, wearing his publisher’s hat (which is green with Bullwinkle antlers, before you even ask), he’s my boss. And he’s also a best-selling, award-winning, sharp-dressing, pleasant-smelling author. (Fun break: two of those statements are true. Venture a guess?)

I kid, I kid.

Look, I like you guys so I wouldn’t steer you wrong. It costs $2.99 to preorder Betrayed. Now I know that at this exact second some of you have $2.99 in your hands, and you were about to throw it out the window. Some of you might even have been about to drop it in the whirring garbage disposal. You folks, especially, should thank me because once that change hit the blades things were going to go bad for you. So not only am I tipping you off to this great new book, I probably just saved your life.

You are welcome.

Click the pic or the highlighted title. There. I’ve given you two ways to buy the book.

You’re welcome again.


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