I had a scare the other day. I opened up the folder containing all my documents for Far From the Sea, and it was gone! The other documents were still there but the main manuscript was missing. No I didn't scream or yell or cry. I was too stunned. My jaw was in my lap and I kept reading the titles over and over thinking it had to be there. It wasn't.
Since I received my netbook I have been using ZumoDrive (It's like drop box) so I can access my work from both the desktop and the netbook. When I could breath again I ran downstairs and checked on my netbook. It was there and I could access it just fine. For some reason after doing that it worked fine on my desktop too. I think it got hung up the last time I used it on the laptop and ZumoDrive thought the document was still open and so wouldn't let me access it other places. That's a guess.
The thing is I have several back up copies. I keep a copy on my desktop, one on a thumb drive and every now and again I email it to myself. It had been a couple weeks since I had updated the backups but I still wouldn't have lost too much. Even if it had been gone it wouldn't have been devastating. Still, when I saw it wasn't there I was heartbroken. I stared at the computer in confusion, I could hear my brain telling me "you have backups for this reason" but my heart was weeping blood at the loss of my baby. I thought I was ready to let my MS out in the world and that I would be tough enough to take the criticism and rejection it would receive. After this little demonstration of how much this WIP means to me I may need to toughen myself up a little.
Have you ever lost a manuscript? How do you backup to prevent fatalities?