It’s day 14 of NaNoWriMo, and the calendar says: Back-up Your Novel!
Of course, I’d advise that you back up every day, or at least every couple of days. Because every word counts, and loosing even a day’s work will leave you frustrated and not wanting to write.
To help with that, I wanted to share with you some free tools that allow you to back up to a robust server while writing.
So, here are my top 3 backup plans for your digital NaNo novel, or any other files:
3- OneDrive from Microsoft: Windows, Mac, Android and iOS
This one comes with your Windows OS, or you can download it free from the Microsoft website. All you’ll need is disk space for the install and a Microsoft mail account. I’ve had mine for years, and still have files on it I thought I’d lost forever.
It comes with a free plan of 5GB, but has the disadvantage that you’ll have to create a new Microsoft account, if you didn’t have one to use it. Moreover, on my Win 8, I have to sign in the whole computer to my Microsoft account to launch it, which I don’t want to do. It’s a great deal if you’re already a Microsoft account user (including live and outlook).
2-Google Drive: Windows, Mac, Android and iOS
This kiddo comes right out from the giant’s mouth, and has the storage space to show for it.
It has the largest capacity on the list with a wonderful 15GB shared between all Google tools (Gmail, Docs, etc…). If like me you have more than one account, you’ll get 15 GB of free cloud storage space for each of your accounts, but you can only sync with one at the time.
I use Drive to backup my novels, and books and plenty of other larger files. It’s only second because it can disconnect at random times, and behaves a bit erratically when the connection is slow. Other than that, a great tool.
1- Dropbox: Windows, Mac,Linux, Android and iOS
My number one tool is Dropbox. Even with it’s small free plan storage space at only 2GB, it is still the best to me. Their apps, across all devices, are stable, and deal with weak WiFi days in a wonderful way.
I usually use it for school-related items, and the small more crucial files. They even have a Linux client for my Ubuntu, which Google Drive doesn’t have yet.
These three can be equally beneficial for the NaNo novelist. All you have to do is download and install. For each you get a folder with their name in your hard drive. Then you copy your novel, and write on that copy. Whenever you save the file, it is automatically backed up to your account.
You’ll have it safe and sound on trusted servers, and across most of your devices for mobile access.
Don’t forget the old fashioned USB drive (I dislike them for the high possibility of corrupted sectors and Virus infections, personally), or an external drive (same issues).
If you’re writing by hand, try taking pictures of your pages and uploading them to one of these accounts. Worst case scenario? Just print them out 🙂
Bottom line: Back up your novel 🙂