Losing the First Chapter

There was one point since my initial decision to be an author, that I tried incredibly hard to give it up. I managed only for about a year, just before I started this blog. After a while it became an impossible task and I couldn’t stop my imagination running wild.

But that, for some of you, is not new information; Instead, this is the story of why I tried to give up.

It started when my laptop finally reached memory capacity. I am a hoarder among a lot of things, but still quite distinctively a hoarder. Just the other day I discovered my laptop is currently holding 300GB of pictures… I was going to sort through them before that, but I think I’ll just bung them on a separate hard drive for later.

Once my last laptop started refusing to save any more, I started deleting some stuff to make way for more… nonsense probably… and I guess, guess because I’m not quite sure what happened, that I may have deleted something quite important. Say uhhh, a program file.

(This story is set in my first year of sixth form, where most of my friends were guys in computing. At this climactic point of horror, I can still see their faces now. Wide eyes, panicky grimaces, really trying not to pull their hair out. It’s the image that makes me shudder when anyone mentions “program files”.)

I was not a computing guy – although I have very much learned my lesson now. The laptop, as you may already suspect, went caput. And had to completely restart itself.

There was a lot of memories on there that I have now forgotten, sadly. A lot of camera footage from when I first discovered YouTube and tried making my own videos. Some old, early computer games adopted from cereal boxes. I imagine also a lot of school work, but I don’t remember minding that.

In fact I thought of none of the above at least immediately. When the laptop went caput, I had just finished – properly finished, finalised – the first chapter of a story I’m writing. And that realisation literally sank my heart.

Still to the moment I am writing this, I think it may have been the best piece of writing I have ever produced. The extent of my pride in that piece of writing is cemented in the fact that I actually shared it with my mum. That is the only relief I can take from this story; knowing someone got to read a really good piece of writing of mine!

So there I was, absolutely devastated. For a while I kept writing down every line I could remember, hoping to piece it back together. But, I don’t think I even managed to get half of it back. Perhaps not even a third.

It sounds dramatic, but I was so heartbroken for this loss. Knowing I would never be able to write something that great again, I just drifted away from the dream. At first it came naturally. Then after a while my imagination wouldn’t stop nagging me to the point where I was unbearably missing my various fictional worlds.

At this time I took the bus to work, and it soon became a habit that I would carry a notebook around with me and scrawl a few lines here and there while commuting or on lunch break. Now I was writing randomly for fun (which is the WORST way to write a story by the way, but I can tell you that one another time), eventually with a sort of cohesive plot.

When I organised all the notes and put them together I realised I had written a tonne more than I expected. Now I am about 4,000 words from finishing that story I started, lost and restarted all over again.

It’s here that I should tell you never to give up because a true traveller never travels with the idea of a destination. I had more fun writing when I didn’t take it too seriously.

But let’s be honest, the lesson of this story is ALWAYS BACK UP YOUR HARD EARNED WORK.

2 thoughts on “Losing the First Chapter

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