Six Ways to Back Up Your Writing Files

Six Ways to Back Up Your Writing Files

By Lynda Lee Schab

For writers, losing work is equivalent to losing a child. Well, not really, but you get the picture. Backing up files is essential. The way you choose to protect your work depends on what type of writing you do, and your particular lifestyle.

Here are 6 options to choose from:

1. EXTERNAL HARD DRIVE - Hooks up to your computer via USB port.

PROS – It’s portable, safe, holds huge amounts of data, is upgradable if you need more storage, and keeps your computer from getting clogged with downloads and large files.

CONS – You have to actually remember to do it; it’s a little bulky to transport; it’s pricey – it will cost you anywhere from $50 – $100+ for a decent one.

2. THUMB/FLASH DRIVE- Tiny device, hooks up to your computer via USB port.

PROS -It’s cheap, sturdy, and small enough to throw in your purse or attach to your keychain.

CONS- Not as much storage as an external hard drive, and easy to misplace. And again, you have to remember to manually transfer your data.

3. DROPBOX - Dropbox is a simple online virtual storage utility that allows you to make your files accessible from almost anywhere.

PROS – Everything is online, so no need to carry around a flash drive; Can share content with anyone you’d like.

CONS – Are some concerns about security; 2GB free, but costs extra for more storage; support only online.

4. MOZYDownloadable backup software that automatically saves all data twice per day to an online storage site.

PROS – Reliable security; affordable — 50 GB for $5.99 per month; Does not constantly run in background, but runs only during the file transfers; Flexible automatic schedule, so nothing to remember.

CONS – No file sharing; Can take up to 3 days for initial backup, No phone support

5. CARBONITE- Similar to Mozy, Carbonite is downloadable online backup software.

PROS – Unlimited storage; intuitive backup process; apt for beginners and inexperienced users; Phone support;.File searching offered; 15-day free trial.

CONS – Offers only annual plans (starting at $59.99), no monthly options available; Must purchase a new plan for each computer; Must manually select files to transfer.

6. EMAIL - Email yourself a copy of your manuscript every time you add to it.

PROS: Easy; Free; Can access from anywhere

CONS: Have to remember to actually do it; If email address is compromised, you may lose your most recent copy.

The most important thing, of course, isn’t which option you choose, but that you do it. How do you back up your work?

lyndaschabLYNDA LEE SCHAB got her writing start in greeting cards and has many articles and stories published in magazines and online publications. She works behind the scenes at, is a regular book reviewer for, but Lynda’s passion has always been fiction. Her novels, MIND OVER MADI and MADILY IN LOVE, are available in print and on Kindle. Lynda lives in Michigan with her two children. Learn more about Lynda on her website,


Congrats to Latest Blog Contest Winners!

FaithWriters’ latest blogging contest, focused on The Set Apart Church, a new online non-denominational church without walls, is finished – and winners have been announced. Winners will receive recognition, the knowledge of blessing and ministering to those who might need a church like this, AND prizes.

And without further ado – congratulations to our winners – check out their entries in the FaithWriters forums!

First Place: Tear Down the Walls of the Church by Wayne Cook (wins two paid writing assignments from The Set Apart Church valued at $150)

Second Place: Something Larger Than Myself by Kathleen A. Trissel (wins one paid writing assignment from The Set Apart Church valued at $75)

Best Silver Entry: It’s Never too Late by Graham Keet (wins a free one-year gold membership to FaithWriters)

Congratulations to the winners! Watch the forums for the next blog contest.


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Share Your Testimony

TrialsandTriumphscover2-21-14_opt (2)Have you had a chance to read Trials and Triumphs, FaithWriters’ first book of testimonies? Forty different FaithWriters members share their stories of salvation or God’s provision through trials. These testimonies will inspire and encourage you – and could help bring a lost brother or sister to faith – and, for a limited time, the book is free in the FaithWriters bookstore in exchange for a review. If you don’t have it already, head on over and get it for yourself! You WILL be blessed.

Reading these testimonies may just inspire you to write up your own – and if so,  we have a possible outlet for it. Did you know that FaithWriters (in collaboration with Xulon Press) is putting out a SECOND testimony book? It’s true – and there is a contest going on right now to choose the fifty testimonies to be included in the book. It could be YOU who has a testimony published in the next book.

Any gold or platinum member who was not published in the first book is eligible to enter this contest. Simply write your testimony (either of salvation or of keeping your faith during struggles) according to the contest guidelines (scroll down a bit on the page linked to here to read them) in 1,200 words or less, and submit it before the contest deadline of August 15, 2014. The 50 entries selected will not only be published, but the authors will participate in royalties from the book’s sales.

Sound good? Check out the guidelines, and get working on your testimony!


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See It, Smell It, Taste It, Hear It…

See It, Smell It, Taste It, Hear It…

By Megan DiMaria

I recently read a story that left me wholly unsatisfied. The author skimped on writing in the sensory details. I felt disoriented while reading and found myself eager to be finished.
Beaver Creek 2007 001
When I read, either fiction or non-fiction, I need to feel as if I’m dropped into the scene and can experience what the character can experience.

The photo on the left is taken from the window of a luxury resort in Beaver Creek, Colorado. (I cashed in lots and lots of loyalty points to enjoy a few days in the Rockies.)

If I were reading a scene that takes place in that resort I’d like to know what the room looked like. How did the luxurious bedding feel to a weary body? How big were the windows, and what kind of shadows fell across the floor? How did the wind sing as it wove its way through the pines? Can you hear the whinny of horses as they cart vacationers through the mountain trails? Did the breeze carry the fragrance of pine boughs? What color blue was the sky? How plush was the carpet? What speciality was the hotel’s chef known for?

All those little details woven into the story help to transport the reader. If I take the time to read your book, please transport me.

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Joseph of Arimathaea

Joseph of Arimathaea
By Lori Dixon

Joseph of Arimathea, a prominent member of the Council, who was himself waiting for the kingdom of God, went boldly to Pilate and asked for Jesus’ body.When he learned from the centurion that it was so, he gave the body to Joseph. So Joseph bought some linen cloth, took down the body, wrapped it in the linen, and placed it in a tomb cut out of rock. Then he rolled a stone against the entrance of the tomb. Mark 15:43-44, 46 NIV

I’m sitting in semi-darkness weeping over Joseph of Arimathaea and the conviction I am under this morning as I examine my own life.

He took Jesus down.

How many times have I read this passage and just skipped over this man’s sacrifice? This man’s bravery? His dedication to do a job that nobody would have signed up for.

To approach Pilate was somewhat crazy enough, but then it says he begged . . . Mark’s version said he ‘craved’ the body of Christ. This morning, in the privacy that can only be found at the crack of dawn, I sit and cry, well aware that I am such a comfort seeker had I been there at the cross I most likely would not have volunteered to take on the dirty task.

I picture Joseph prying Christ’s hands and feet free. The open wound on His side oozing blood mingled with water . . . stickiness staining Joseph’s hands and clothes. The discomfort of exposure. To see His Savior naked. People were with Joseph; he had an audience of mourners during this most intimate exercise.

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Writing Feedback – Sharing Your Babies

Our writing projects can sometimes feel like our babies. We spend so much time thinking about them, writing, editing, fixing, rewriting, that oftentimes, we might have trouble seeing their faults. Our wonderful writing, it seems, can do no wrong.

But there is always room for growth. Even bestselling authors need editors, and folks with a different perspective. And the neat thing is, anyone can give feedback to anyone – you don’t need to be a bestselling author to share your thoughts, as a reader, on a piece. If something doesn’t make sense to you, a learning writer (and we are ALL learning) needs to know.

One of the best places for this kind of feedback – whether receiving it or giving it – is FaithWriters’ Critique Circle. Currently, several advanced level writers and some editors are spending time there, leaving feedback for folks who submit their work. And the comments folks make are not available to those who browse – so people are more likely, I believe, to be honest with you about where your piece might need work.

All upgraded members need to do to get constructive feedback is to leave some for others – and remember, ANY feedback from folks of any level is helpful. Anyone can leave a critique – and when you do, you get a credit to sumbit your own work to the Critique Circle. Gold and Platinum members can then submit work for critique themselves, likely resulting in two or three critiques from others.

Don’t be afraid of sharing your babies with the world – a little critique can only make them better!


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Big Goals and Interview Tips

Big Goals and Interview Tips

By Lizzy Ainsworth

I’ve been hearing a lot lately how we need to set ourselves some crazy goals, to go further than what we thought we could and think outside our little box or blog.

So I set a goal, and maybe I’ve set the timeline too close, but by Mother’s Day next year, I want to interview a specific best-selling author and a very popular blogger.  I’m not mentioning names, because it’s just a pipe dream at the moment.

I decided to start interviewing people to work towards this goal .I figured I would start with a few self-published authors and work toward something bigger, but then this opportunity popped up to interview Candy Chand, who co-authored ‘No Greater Love’ with Levi Benkert, published by Tyndale House.

I loved the book, and started thinking about the woman who co-authored it, who had poured in her heart and soul to this book, but whose story was not told, and thought, ‘I want to know more.’

So I googled her name, but I could not find an interview that answered the questions I wanted to ask her, but I did find her e-mail address. So I gathered up my courage and wrote a little e-mail about how I was a young author, with a little, little blog but that I would love to interview her.  After all she could only say no, right?  Thing is, she said yes, and actually she said it within 5 minutes of my sending her the e-mail.

Continue Reading…

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Help Authors – and Yourself – with Reviews

Do you know what one of the most valuable things is to published authors these days? What can boost sales and get more recognition in the world of books?

Book reviews – that’s what. With the plethora of different book options out there, reviews on sites like Amazon can draw people to books, and good reviews can encourage folks to purchase.  And FaithWriters has a program to help authors get those reviews – AND benefit the readers as well.

FaithWriters’ Free Reads for Reviews is a way for authors to accumulate reviews (and readers to get free books) to help with sales and marketing. Just go to the FaithWriters bookstore and check out the Free Reads for Reviews program. There are over six dozen books by FaithWriters members available in this program, from fiction to self-help to Bible studies and more. Simply look at the list, contact the author, and he or she will send you a copy. Read the book, leave an HONEST review (doesn’t have to be positive) at their Amazon page or elsewhere if applicable – and you’ve done your part!

But that isn’t the only benefit to readers! FaithWriters has a special incentive going on now through the end of June. The person who reviews the most books between the beginning of this year and midnight June 30, 2014 will receive $150 – and everyone who reviews any book during that time will get their name put in a hat, with one person winning $100. See this link for details and how to make your review “count.”

And if you’re an author and want your book involved, check out this link.

What book will you review first?

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Why I Create

Why I Create
By Abby Kelly

They called it re:Write. As I sat my bum in a chair pinched between two other wannabe writers, (or perhaps they’ve already arrived and confidently call themselves “scribes,” as such) tears welled in my eyes.

Apparently, not enough of my life is “re:Writing” to make blip on a publisher’s radar. Apparently, the spontaneous energy that itches at the tips of my fingers and prickles my mind when there’s no paper in sight isn’t really what good books are made of. Apparently, almost nobody reads anymore. Apparently, the mysterious romance of author and pen, discovery and syntax, melody and imagination just isn’t enough. And apparently, even a message from God, a testimony of redemption, this welling glory in my chest, a conviction to share Gospel through story, to wrap my story up in His story, just may not be newsworthy.

Between masters of market analysis and prestigious publishers, an author was sandwiched. Ted Dekker took the stage in artsy array, as if he’d clothed himself from the quirky Austin shops on his way to the conference. His message entranced me and coaxed even more tears through the rivulets already marring my makeup.

It was almost as if he implored me not to be there. His call to my artist-heart was that sweet-sorrowful voice of Create, wooing me to endure. I wept, fearful that in twelve more hours of facts and figures, the voice would be drowned out. Back in my room last night, I sobbed.

I picked up the program, willing myself to will to go back, to face the cold, hard truth of the dismal potential of publishing.

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Are You Working on your Contest Entries?

FaithWriters has several different contests going on, whether you are writing book-length work, or shorter pieces. And at least one, I’m sure, is right up your alley. See the highlights of some of them here.

Do you have a book-length nonfiction manuscript started, sitting on the shelf, or brewing in your head? Then FaithWriters’ Eighth Annual Page Turner contest may be what you’re looking for. Just polish your first chapter, plus an overview of the rest of the book, and submit it no later than October 31, 2014 at the Page Turner page (you must be a platinum member to enter and access this page – click here to upgrade to platinum). The winner will receive fabulous prizes, incuding $800, free editing and marketing of the finished book, and more. Stop by this link for more details.

Maybe your book-length manuscript is fiction. If so, FaithWriters and Xulon Press are awarding a Xulon Best Seller Package and free premium publicity and marketing for the book on all FaithWriters sites to one Christian fiction novel with a sound biblical message. Platinum members can submit the first chapter and book synopsis/outline and be in the running for this prize. More details can be found here. Deadline for this contest is November 30, 2014.

Maybe shorter works are more your thing. If so, we have a few options in that area as well.

Continue Reading…

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