Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Diary of my website disappearance

My website completely self-destructed over the weekend. It’s partly the fault of my host, or at least, a phone support guy there who cleared out the wrong subdomain, but partly my fault for not having a decent backup. So, if you are looking for info on my stuff, it's coming. Slowly. Because I have been busy going through stages!!  

Stages on Saturday

Tearful disbelief 
I become tearful on the phone with the host support when I learn the site is gone. Just...gone. And their backup they made is of the blank site. And I have a release out this week! (AGAINST THE DARK out on the 19th; info here).

Anger and freakout! 
Chocolate consumption begins early that day.

 Gratitude for my twitter friends
You guys, it was so nice to go on there and for people to be all kindness and feeling sorry for me.

I accepted the site was gone late Saturday. And there was a small thought in the corner of my mind that my site sucked anyway.  The old site was cool and all, but it was 90% geared toward ‘let’s have fun!’ and 10% geared toward…oh yeah, I have these books.

Did you ever see my old site? The front page was just my header and than a whole bunch of pictures. it was very artistic! Like:
This deer picture, above, took you to the news page. I  had a caption something like "I have something to tell you." Please note the fangs, which I lovingly photoshopped onto this deer last year. Not the best use of a writer's time, I'll admit.

This square was "where is gumby?" and if you clicked on it, it would take you to a page that told you
how to spot the gumby on the Head Rush cover. Click here for instructions if you're curious.

This is fun, but probably not really an effective way of suggesting that I am a writer of steamy and suspenseful fiction. AKA not the best branding. 

Users would click here to get to my facebook page.

So, really, I could use a new site. What is kind of amusing is that I actually am in advertising, so you'd think I'd know better about things like, oh, marketing and websites, but I'm in the part where somebody tells me to think of ideas or write this or that, and I obey. Nobody in their right mind would rely on me for an overall branding vision. And I think the above examples demonstrate why that might be. 

Silver lining:
Husband suggests we order pizza for dinner. Yay!!


Eerie calm 
I begin to redo site. Things are not going well, as I am not tech savvy, but I still feel calm. As in, not upset. I check the calendar and confirm that, indeed, I am nowhere near PMS zone. Probably for the best.

Shock at what I have lost
Every now and then I have to write things on my new site, and I'll remember a perfected version of it on my old site, but no, it is gone. Everything must be rewritten, except what exists in some form on this blog. Oh, thank heavens I was too lazy to convert my blogger blog to wordpress. Kiss kiss, blogger, even though I complain bitterly about you sometimes!!! 

Art project zone-out
I worked way too long on my new header on Sunday. I think it still needs something else, like an explosion and crosshairs, maybe. Jeffe Kennedy suggested the crosshairs be placed over the man’s heart. Oh, cruel and evil Jeffe!!

It's not the most amazing header, but hey, it's not a deer with fangs, right? 

I only had a little bit of free time to work on the site today, and I made it way, way worse. My navigation has purple in it and it WON’T GET OFF. The terms are all wrong, too, but I can fix that. I can't fix the purple!!! I’m writing this as I wait for somebody to help me in the support forums. It is really way past my bedtime. Uh. 

Above, my impressive site nav scheme. Doesn't the purple look attractive?
It's like the spot that wouldn't come out in that Dr. Seuss book.
I am going to have nightmares about that purple tonight. 

Okay! The phases of my site! Okay, I am giving up on the support forums and going to bed. Well, check back - maybe I'll have more exciting phases tomorrow!!

EDITED to add: Thank  you Stumbling over Chaos Chris & Carolyn Jewel for alerting me to the existence of CACHES!!! I have my text back. Omg, I am so happy. Thank you!! 


B.E. Sanderson said...

Ack! I'm so sorry that happened to you. Here's hoping the new site doesn't take too much getting all set up (evil purple aside), and that it's even better than before.

Hang in there. :hugs:

Chris said...


Have you tried searching for cached pages of your site?


Carolyn Crane said...

Thank you, B.E.!!! I'm hoping, too!

Chris: you are really fabulous for thinking of this. The pages aren't there, either, but I had imagined something like this was possible and wished I knew how.

Melissa (My World...in words and pages) said...

I was wondering this weekend. I was working up your post, for future, and links weren't working. Figured it'd be up soon and maybe things were changing.

And now they are. Lovely new header! And sorry for the distress, but hubby is great with ordering pizza. ;D

Carolyn Jewel said...

Go here: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/4560400/how-can-i-get-google-cache-age-of-any-url-or-web-page

And follow the instructions for getting a cache.

Good luck!

Jeffe Kennedy said...

Carolyn Jewel is so smart - I hope that works!

And why are crosshairs over the heart evil??? It could be, like, targeting his lurv!

KB/KT Grant said...

Lil CJ is to blame!!

I think she needs her own website ;P

Laura Bickle said...

ACK! This whole thing is ACK! But I hope that all is getting better. *hugs*

Anonymous said...

Oh darn, that's horrible! Yes, you need a new site to sell on your books. The new one which you're developing looks nice. I actually like the header. I suggest that this time you get some help in maintaining it. There are companies out there that offer services for enhancement and optimization for newly launched websites.

Cambria Ludwig

Sage Aumick said...

I am so sorry that you lost your website during such an important week. :( But as you mentioned, you are in need of an upgrade. It's a good thing you were told about caches, so you can recover the text. Now, it's just a matter of using better images to use for the links, so you can represent your brand more effectively. Good luck making the new site! And remember, make a backup!

Kristofer Mcginty said...

I feel truly sorry for you. But as I read on, I thought that maybe what happened was a blessing in disguise. Don't you agree? If the old site didn't crash, you wouldn't have thought of creating a new one and improve the look of your site. Please don't get the wrong idea; I'm not mocking you or anything, but if those photos posted above were the ones you used as icons, then I think it's the best time to look for people who can redesign and enliven your new site. Feel better soon! Kristofer Mcginty

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