My first Computer was a Commador Vic20; yes, I am that old. When I first started using computers, I was taught a valuable skill. Save early, Save often. Repeat, forever. Keep in mind that I was never taught the reverse, which is to delete outdated versions and keep your files system clean and tidy. I still struggle with that, and it brings its own set of problems. My computer glitched over the weekend after I poured my heart into a particularly important chapter of my WIP, “Emergence Ascended.” Of course, I had finished the chapter to my satisfaction. I use autosave on my one drive, and up until now, it had been my go-to for “save early, save often,” and I relied on it. When I wanted to give my chapter a quick review, I opened the WIP, and everything I had written was gone. I double-checked save settings, file locations, time stamps, etc. but to no avail. I was left in shock; it was a great chapter and a pivotal part in the story.
Whatever the glitch was, it saved over an old file (chapter 4, of all things). I was lucky enough to randomly open that file (not the first I tried) and noticed a line I had recently written. I carefully copied and pasted it into the correct location. SAVED again, made a copy of the entire WIP, and saved it to an archive folder just in case.
My diligence in saving early save often but using automation that is not always reliable taught me another lesson to periodically clean out the old and make copies. Learn from me.