So im an idiot.

I spent hours on the newet chapter of hotfoot, and forgetting that this was wordpress and not blogger i was writing on, I exited right out. Just now, I opened the draft, and found it completely empty. Im sad, i feel like an idiot, and im going to miss a deadline. How do I stop this from happening in the future?

It sounds like you do things very differently than me. I have a buffer of unreleased chapters which I write in Word, and then just copy the completed chapter into Wordpress when I publish it.

I always write offline, and then copy and paste into Wordpress when the post is complete. That way, I have more reliable saving (online forms always have saving and timeout issues), and I can write anywhere, anytime, without needing an internet connection. Transferring it into Wordpress also becomes a proofing exercise, which never hurts.

It also means I have an offline copy, should anything catastrophic happen to my website, web server, or Wordpress database. I've never had that problem, but you never know.... Plus, it makes it easier to collate and convert the story into ebooks when the serial or book is finished.

Yea I just started that. Thanks.

Do you have a self-hosted wordpress or a dotcom wordpress? Wordpress dot com's post editor autosaves every time you pause in writing now. And the old Wordpress (now WP Admin) did have an autosave feature as well, but only if you saved at least once manually beforehand, iirc.

I just write everything in the post editor and then copy it over offline for safekeeping.

I use self-hosted Wordpress and do the same thing as Dennis. Wordpress autosaves your changes, or at least it should. At any rate, my Wordpress installation does.

I always write on Google Docs, because the autosave has saved my life more times than I'd like to admit.

I do the same as ClearMadness - maintain a buffer, write posts offline in Word and then copy them over into Wordpress on release day. That practice has saved me many, many times.

Jim, I actually thought that was how wordpress worked, but I think I messed up and somehow it didn't save my work. How would I get it to?

The only thing that I can think is that you didn't at any point save it yourself. If that's the case, it's probably gone, but if you did save it, it would be in the posts list. Assuming the autosave function also worked,you'd either have the whole thing or be able to restore the version you need off of the list of previous versions.

Yeah. I've only had it happen once where a draft wasn't saved. Go to posts, check for any active drafts - they'll have - Drafts at the end.

I do all my writing in the Wordpress browser. I get horrific formatting issues if I copy over from google docs or openoffice or writr or whatever else.

I am properly paranoid in that regard and write everything by hand. At least the first draft. Then copy it to word and edit it. A few days later I copy the text from word to wordpress and make the second edit. By copying I mean "writing every single sentence again", naturally.

Haven't got any formatting issues as of yet though.

@wildblow Yea I saw that, but the post was completely blank.

Did you check the version of the post? That's near the bottom. I've occasionally managed to delete everything in the post, but been able to revert to a previous version.

Honestly... I just use the generic wordpad that comes with every computer to write my rough draft.

Then I copy over to wordpress and do my final drafting and formats.

Other than occasionally missing "thoughts go in italics", it's served me quite well thus far. And I think the reread and edits greatly improve the chapters as a whole.

Thanks Jim. I'll try that out right now.

And now the blog post desnt exist, according to Wordpress. :(

The problem with trusting any online editor to autosave your work is, if your internet goes down, the autosave doesn't work. And usually doesn't say anything about it.

Personally I'm a humongous fan of Google Docs, because it saves practically by the keystroke, AND keeps an enormous revision history that makes undoing big mistakes pretty easy.

GDocs is my life, basically. I hate giving myself over so fully to such a giant company, but nobody else comes close to doing what GDocs does.

Honestly? The one huge drawback is the fact that the formatting messes up so badly when you copy from GDocs to Wordpress (same thing happens with Blogger, last time I checked -- though I haven't used that one in over a year, thank god). But I sort of consider that a win, because going back to remove all the weird spacing in-between lines (that's the only real formatting issue I've run into) forces me to read over my draft again. Which is useful.