Monday, October 24, 2016

Nine (Plus) Tips for Using Dropbox

with guest Carol Moncado.

A few months ago, Tina approached me and asked if I’d like to be a part of Seekerville’s Birthday Party and to talk a bit about Dropbox. The answer, of course, was “duh – yeah!” 

I’ve put together Nine (Plus) Things You Should Know About Dropbox and How Writers Can Use It. There's also a giveaway!

1. Save Your Sanity

I know it might seem a bit trite, but it’s the absolute truth. Have you ever had that heart-stopping moment when your computer goes black or the Windows Blue Screen of Death pops up? Or you get to a conference and realize you forgot your power cord?

Dropbox is your answer. Anything saved to Dropbox is accessible. And the nice thing? Once you get past the initial backup, everything is saved instantly to the Dropbox cloud. Now, you do have to have an internet connection, but as long as you do, you’re unlikely to lose any of your files.

2. Access From Anywhere

So what happens when you get to another computer? Or borrow a friend’s laptop at that conference – or find the hotel’s business center?

You’ve already installed it on your computer. Now you can log in to the Dropbox website and everything you’ve ever backed up is there. If you work outside the home, you can access it from your work computer (I’ve done this many times – but don’t skimp on your actual work!!!! :D). If your computer died and you’re waiting for a new one, but can borrow a laptop from someone else – it’s all there (don’t ask how I know about this one :p).

3. Sync New Computers – and Across Computers

But…once you get that new computer, or if you have multiple computers you use regularly, Dropbox will sync your files immediately – as long as both have an internet connection. So you’re working away on your laptop at Panera, and when you get home, your file is already updated on your desktop. You get your new computer set up, install Dropbox, and your files will immediately start downloading. If you need certain files immediately, you can choose to download those files or folders first. For instance, you can download the folder with All The Stuff for your current WIP first, then download everything else.

4. Not a Substitute for CrashPlan/Carbonite/etc.

That said, Dropbox is NOT a substitute for a whole computer backup plan like CrashPlan or Carbonite. Dropbox has a limit of 2 gigabytes of data, unless you use their paid version, though you can earn up to 32 gigabytes by going through the tutorial, referring friends, and syncing photos. If you have pretty much any pictures or music or programs on your computer, the 2 gigabytes won’t be nearly enough for a whole computer backup. So I strongly recommend one of those programs or one similar to them. Currently, I use CrashPlan which has a family plan and unlimited space for your backups. This is a PC Magazine article comparing several different options with links to their reviews of each.

5. Change How You Save Your Files – Just a Little Bit

To make it work you do have to change how you save your files, just a tiny bit. Once installed, rather than saving in the “My Documents” folder, you need to save in the new “Dropbox” folder. Before I started using Dropbox, I saved all of my writing-related stuff in a “My Books” folder inside the “My Documents” folder. Once Dropbox was installed, I simply dragged “My Books” into the Dropbox folder, and the computer took care of moving everything. When you save something new, save it somewhere in the Dropbox folder. In Windows, this Dropbox folder should show up in two places on your file explorer – as its own entity and as a library (see picture).

Click on picture to enlarge.
Continuous save. If you use Scrivener, this feature is built in. If you use Microsoft Word, you can set it to AutoSave or AutoBackup (or both) however often you’d like. The AutoRecover panel will help you find the files if needed. In theory, this prevents you from ever losing more than a few minutes of work. If you have your AutoSave set for every five minutes, you’ll never lose more than five minutes of work. I won’t say that I’ve never heard of anyone having issues with it, but most of those are likely user error rather than an issue with the program itself (don’t ask me how I know that one :p).

Click on Picture to Enlarge
You can download the Dropbox app from your favorite app store. Once you’ve done so, you can access the files on the go. One big difference is that on your computer, Dropbox downloads everything, but on a phone or tablet, etc., it doesn’t. It basically gives you an index of files saved in your Dropbox, and you can download what you want. As an indie author, I save my cover mock-ups in Dropbox. I can open Dropbox on my phone, save the picture and text it to a friend or beta reader to get their opinions. You can also download documents and work on them while on your tablet/other device. How you do this varies based on the device you’re using and what other apps you have at your disposal to edit them with, etc. (See picture)

7. Send to Kindle/App

Many writers send their WIPs to their Kindles/Kindle apps/Assorted other ereader-ish things from time to time. One common way is to email it to your device. However, if you can’t do that for some reason, you can use an applet called BookDrop to get files from Dropbox to Kindle. Follow the instructions on the website to get it connected. Then any file you’d like on your Kindle, save (or copy) it to the right folder (Dropbox/Apps/book-drop). A few minutes after your Kindle/App connects to the internet, the file will appear on it. I had much more time on my hands than expected at a marching band competition recently, and I was able to transfer a file into that folder via the Dropbox app and have it appear on my Kindle iPad App. This works for Word doc files, PDF files, and .mobi (Kindle) files.

Note: You need to install this from a computer and not a phone or tablet.

8. Share Files

If you’re working with a collaborator, you can share a file. Or it can be an easy way to share with a beta reader. My oldest daughter is a freshman in the marching band. After one of their competitions this fall, we were given a Dropbox link to videos of their preliminary and finals performances. We were able to download them to watch (but asked not to upload them publicly, and they were watermarked). Another friend sent me access to her Dropbox file of another band I wanted to see but missed (Dr. Who show!!!!) – I could move it to my own Dropbox and watch it at my convenience. Documents can be shared as read-only or so they can be edited. I used the app on my phone to share this blog file with a friend while I attended my 6th grader’s first concert (I admit it; I use that term fairly loosely for a group of kids who’ve been playing less than two months). I discovered I have some trumpet skilz while my friend read over the blog and made some comments. By the time I got home, I had an email waiting for me with her notes.

9. Share Folders

You can also share folders. InspyRomance is a reader-oriented blog I’m a part of. There are five of us on the admin team, and all of us have access to the admin folder. We can save documents or other files there so all of us can access them whenever needed. It’s far easier than emailing a document around every time a change is made.

PLUS**Did I Mention Save Your Sanity?

I have lots, and lots, of writer friends on Facebook. I’d say that once a month, on average, I see a post from one of them about “AH! Lightning struck my house! My computer’s fried!” or “Had to evacuate due to flood waters! We lost EVERYTHING! Including the book that’s due NEXT WEEK! IT’S ALL GONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!” or “My hard drive crashed, and now what?” or “The power went out, and my computer turned off!”

Yes, you can email yourself drafts every night to some sort of web-based email like Gmail or to a friend who won’t delete them until you say so. But that would only affect anything you’d emailed. Dropbox takes a lot of the guess work out of it – and it will save everything in that folder for you. It’ll be available to work on while you’re without your own computer and will load it all back onto your new computer when you get it set up.

Bonus: If you’re using the new Scrivener App for iPhone/iPad, you can use Dropbox to sync your projects between the app and your computer program.

Double Bonus: When discussing this post, Tina sent me this article from Dropbox about some of the newer features. This article includes more details about collaborating and sharing files, as well as how you can create new documents from your phone and how to scan whiteboards, scribbled napkin notes, or other things to create a digital file you can use at home or share.

Some of these tips only apply to the more tech savvy among you, but if you can create a new file and save it to the destination of your choice, you can use Dropbox. I’m not exaggerating when I say it can save your sanity. I’ve been there. I’ve done that. I’ve lost EVERYTHING in a hard drive crash before. Fortunately, it was before I started writing seriously, and I was able to piece almost everything together from emails to friends, etc. I did lose several “first starts” of a few manuscripts I wish I still had. The recreations just weren’t as good as I remember the originals being.

Some of you might be saying, “But wait! Doesn’t Google Drive do basically the same thing?” As I understand it, kind of ;). That’s something I learned while looking up something else for this post. They do have an app you can load on your computer similar to Dropbox and keep everything synced between your computer and your cloud storage. I’ve never used it and am not a big fan of Google Drive in general – at least not for working in it. This CNET article compares Dropbox, Google Drive, Box, Amazon Cloud Drive, and OneDrive – all of which provide similar services.

I go through laptops about every two years (yeah, I know). And it’s super nice to just install Dropbox on the new laptop and overnight or so, everything will just appear on the new one, and I can get back to work without any interruptions. That is the beauty of Dropbox.

Any Dropbox questions you'd like to ask? Any tips you'd like to share?

Wait! Didn’t I say giveaway?! One lucky commenter will receive a Kindle copy of one of my latest releases! Grace to Save was written during the Very First SpeedBo in 2012! Plus – that’s my oldest daughter on the cover! It’s a story very near and dear to my heart for many reasons, and I’m so happy to share it with one of y’all! (Winner announced in the Weekend Edition!)

Grace to Save

Travis Harders has been a single dad since the day he learned he had a daughter with his only one-night stand. Fifteen years later, he and Cassie are getting along just fine and he's even fallen in love. The last thing he expects to find on his doorstep one Tuesday morning is Cassie's mom - the one person he thought he’d never see again - and she's asking the impossible.

Circumstances, including her firefighter brother's death on 9/11, forced Abi Connealy into a decision she's spent years regretting and her daughter grew up without her. But now, a family crisis compels her to do the one thing she swore she never would: find the daughter she’d abandoned just a few days after birth. 

Shocked when Travis doesn’t send her packing, Abi prays to a God she doesn’t believe in that her relationship with her daughter will be restored. Travis plans to propose to his girlfriend, but their relationship hits the rocks as he and Abi both struggle with the long-dormant feelings that never had the chance to develop. 

When Cassie demonstrates incredible grace toward the grandfather who refuses to acknowledge her existence, Abi begins to learn the love of a Savior - a Savior who has more than enough Grace to Save.

When she's not writing about her imaginary friends, USA Today Bestselling Author Carol Moncado is hanging out with her husband, four kids, and a dog who weighs less than most hardcover books. She prefers watching NCIS to just about anything, except maybe watching Castle. She believes peanut butter M&Ms are the perfect food, and Dr. Pepper should come in an IV. When not watching her kids - and the dog - race around her big backyard in Southwest Missouri, she's teaching American Government at a local community college. She's a founding member and President of MozArks ACFW, category coordinator for First Impressions, blogger at InspyRomance, and represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of The Steve Laube Agency.


  1. I have some questions for you, Carol.
    After I read the post two more times (or five more times)

  2. Hi Carol! I love that you are over here on Seekerville because I know you from Inspy Romance :-) It's so fun that your daughter is on the cover of your book!

    I've never used Dropbox nor had any need to really. I don't work from home or need to save important work or anything like that, but I can see the value of it for writers. Especially if your computer goes belly-up or you are borrowing someone elses. Or any number of reasons that you've listed here...I do think the #1 rule is pretty vital: SAVE YOUR! We wouldn't want a bunch of bald writers out there because they've pulled their hair out by losing precious work!! (now that wouldn't be a pretty site would it??)

    Great post, very informative! Dropbox seems pretty simple and straight-forward, which is what I like in a program if ever I had a need for it! :-)

  3. I just printed this.

    I have Dropbox and I totally under utilize it. I am going to try everything you say and then come back and pester you with questions.

    Oh, and welcome back, Carol.

    BTW, tell us a little about your inspy romance site.

  4. Hey all!!! I'm headed to bed (it's that time in my neck of the woods ;)), but I'll be back in the morning with a fantastic spread from Panera for breakfast!!!!

  5. Panera. Pumpkin bagels please. Please????

  6. Not something I feel I have a need for, but then again I do not wrote.

  7. I have digested most of this. Including comparing back up plans. Thank you for that. I got mad at Crashplan and am currently on a free trial of Carbonite. I think I'll try a few others before I make a final decision. Very helpful article appreciate that.

    I have thirty years of manuscript stuff all over my computer. So really Dropbox is an option for my current stuff. A backup plan is what I need for the rest.

    So just how much is 2 gigabytes. How much is that compared to a manuscript? I have it but have only used it a few times when I was out of town for conference so I could access when away from my PC. Seriously, the rest of the time I never use it. How many manuscripts can I shove in there? How many manuscripts can I shove in for the paid version? Must go look at prices. So if you have a back up plan WHY would you want the paid version.

    Is there anything on the market like Dropbox? Comparable?

    What's the doomsday scenario on Dropbox. How can I accidentally destroy it. Because if there is a way, I will find it.

  8. Thank you for the tips, Carol!! Will have to read (and re-read!) and take some notes! :) Thanks for sharing some of your wisdom!

  9. Carol, welcome back! I'm amazed at how integrated Dropbox really is. I use it for some things, but not as my cloud back-up. I use One-Drive for that, and it probably doesn't integrate as well...

    But now I'm used to it... although I can see some fun things with Dropbox!

    And look at you, Miss Tech-Savvy! :) Go you!!!!!

    We were just talking on our loop about back-ups and clouds, so your timing here is perfect. And I LOVED that pic memory that showed up on facebook, of you, Andrea Strong, Mary, Tina and me... How fun that was!!!! It was so lovely to have you gals there.

    I'm still smiling, thinking of it.

  10. I brought coffee. Carol always brings cookies, and she's an amazing baker... so fresh coffee will be a lovely morning addition!

  11. Mmm......Panera. My son just moved into a home about a 1/4 mile from a Panera.

    I would be doomed. Danish.... Mmmm......... Carol, bring Danish. And those ham and cheese and asparagus stuffed little muffin cup thingies. And soup. Yes. Bring soup, mid-day.


  12. Hi Carol. I have Dropbox but haven't really taken the time to utilize it. I guess I'll have to study your blog and then give it a try.

    Have an awesome week everyone!

    Happy Birthday Seekerville.

    Smiles & Blessings,
    Cindy W.

  13. Hi Carol! It's great to see you here at Seekerville. Thanks for the facts on Dropbox. Like Cindy, I have it but I've yet to use it. A new laptop every two years? Yikes!

  14. Hi Carol,

    You are so smart! Thanks for sharing how to use Dropbox effectively.

    Haha, I can just picture telling my husband I need a new laptop every two years. (I'm not saying you're wrong, and I've heard my son say this too.) Have a great day!

  15. Hi Carol,

    Great to see you here today. AND so much GREAT information.

  16. Hi, CAROL! This is a great "in depth" on Dropbox. So you can single-out things you want to be sent there--like manuscripts but not letters to your grandma?

  17. Hi Carol: I didn't have a clue about Dropbox. I eagerly read every word you wrote and will read it again. I just had my computer crash and tried to save what I could. Wish I knew about Dropbox earlier. My new computer arrived with Microsaft Word 10. My husband backed up my hard drive and installed it all on this new one, but....I am still learning how to work the program. I was way behind using Word 2003. Yikes. Once I get up to speed I want to try Dropbox. Thanks for sharing all this good detailed information. All the Seekerville columnists rock.

  18. Happy Ninth Birthday Seekerville on a this 24th day of October. Time for Monday coffee and some blueberry corn muffins to start the morning. Have a good writing day all.

  19. Hi Carole and welcome to Seekerville. What a great post. I use lDropbox, but now I know of more and better ways to use it. Yay!!

    I've used it with crit partners before so we can share files safely.

    Thanks so much for sharing the great ideas. Love that you have your daughter on your cover. You and Myra? So clever and saves modeling fees. Great going.

    Have fun today.

  20. Thanks for the Panera spread. Love going there with my girlfriends. I'll grab a bite before I get to my writing.

  21. Thank you, Carol! I have Dropbox and have used it quite a bit for work but not for my writing.

    I've used it to upload and share covers, headshots and my markerting sheet when on blog yours. When your internet is spotty and/or limited a blogger needs a headshot or cover, it's nice to be able to send them a link and they can download everything they need.

    I've never used the actual Dropbox folder on my harddrive because I didn't understand it.

    Currently, my internet is on the fritz... satellite is out of alignment, :( so I'm typing on my phone. If I had my files saved in the Dropbox folder on my harddrive and I don't have internet access, can I work on the file on my computer. Then what happens when I get internet access? Walk me through it. And talk slowly? Lol

    As long as I'm working ON my harddrive at all times then this is a game changer.

  22. CAROL, welcome back! The first thing I think of when your name pops up is cookies. :-) You're famous for them. But this time I'm bringing peanut butter and chocolate chip cookies to celebrate you're here in Seekerville.

    I have Dropbox and like Tina, I may be under using it. My computer "geek" set it up. But I've never had to access it. Once in a great while, I check to see if my documents are there. Thanks for giving me some tips I'm going to try. I love that it's free but thanks to you, I now know I need more to handle my pictures. Thank you for talking about this!


  23. CAROL M, love the cover and the sound of your story!


  24. CAROL M, as a reader, I rarely use Dropbox. Thank you for sharing these tips.

    Have a wonderful day!

  25. Welcome back, Carol. I read the blog, and saved it to...DROPBOX. How clever was that? As a reader, no writer here, I haven't used it much but I just knew there was more to it that I knew! Thank you!
    I love the cover on your book, and I must read it!

  26. We're such loyal fans of Panera that the cashiers and other staff know us on a first-name basis and stop by our table to chat. ;-)

    Now to Dropbox. I've mainly used it for collaboration or shared business data rather than backing up files. When my email wouldn't send a video file, I dragged and dropped it into Dropbox, and the person a few states away was able to access it right away.

    For backup, I've used Carbonite for about five years, and it's saved my bacon a couple of times when my PC or laptop crashed or fried itself.

    Now did someone mention pumpkin bagels? YUM!

  27. Hi Carol! Waving at you from Nashville!! Say hi to all my kinfolk in your neck of the woods. :-)

  28. We're such loyal fans of Panera that the cashiers and other staff know us on a first-name basis and stop by our table to chat. ;-)

    Now to Dropbox. I've mainly used it for collaboration or shared business data rather than backing up files. When my email wouldn't send a video file, I dragged and dropped it into Dropbox, and the person a few states away was able to access it right away.

    For backup, I've used Carbonite for about five years, and it's saved my bacon a couple of times when my PC or laptop crashed or fried itself.

    Now did someone mention pumpkin bagels? YUM!

  29. Welcome, Carol! Thank you for this! I use Dropbox (barely). And it still stresses me to use it because it was unnerving to move my files out of My Documents. :) It helps to hear more details about how to use it. Maybe I'll trust it more.

  30. Hi Carol:

    Your new book has all the makings of a future 'keeper'. I'm happy for you. A worthy theme.

    Funny, my brother had me install Dropbox, which I never understood, so he could send me very large photo files. I installed it but it did not make sense to me. I just told him to convert the files to jpeg and they would no longer be very large! However, now your post opens a whole new world of Dropbox uses for me.

    However, like many of these 'free' programs, does it give away lots of privacy rights to Dropbox? I wanted to leave a simple post on a sport site that required me to have an account. When I read the account disclosure, I was horrified to read that it allowed the site to read my emails and mail ads to my list of contacts! No thanks!

    Do you know how safe your privacy is with Dropbox? They do seem to have 24/7 access to your computers. I'm not sure this is something I would want to allow except if I had a dedicated laptop that was used only for Dropbox and had no email on it or any other personal info. Also how secure is Dropbox? It would be a highly valuable site to hack with all the personal information it holds. Have you thought about these things?

    Looking forward to reading your "Grace" series. Will you have any future titles like: "Grace's Good Works!" or "By Grace Alone". :))


  31. Hello, Carol! Thank you for this information about Dropbox. While writing a manuscript this summer, I had some issues with OneDrive...or maybe with my aging laptop.....which caused some panic as my deadline approached. Thanks to your recommendation, I'll check out Dropbox. The thought of being able to work from my laptop or mini-iPad is intriguing. Maybe I could could fit in writing-on-the-run! Thanks! And how fun to have your lovely daughter on the cover of the book!

  32. TINA, you'd be amazed at how many book files you can stuff into Dropbox! I keep all my active files there, then move them onto my computer once the books are published and everything (I mean EVERYTHING) is finalized and I'm no longer regularly needing to work with those files.

    I've also used Dropbox to share large files when the person I'm sending something to isn't able to receive the file for whatever reason (mailbox limitations, etc.).

    And I also use Time Machine and Carbonite for full backups of my Mac. You can't be too careful!

  33. PAM, as I understand it, anything you put in Dropbox on your computer is also saved physically to your computer. Once you get online access again, everything will sync and be backed up.

  34. Thank you for all this information in one place! I installed Dropbox awhile ago but must've done something wrong because when I saved a completed MS to Dropbox, it disappeared completely off my laptop. Then I started worrying about the security aspects of Dropbox, if my MS was gone from my laptop, so I uninstalled it. I'm going to print out this blog so I can go over the info again a few times and try to figure out what I did wrong with Dropbox - it sounds wonderful but have you seen anything written about security issues? I worry about OneDrive as well, hackers are everywhere.

    I normally back up to USB drives and an outside hard drive we have at home. But the kind of ease of use with Dropbox does sound enticing, I just have to figure out how I "lost" the complete MS from my computer.

    I'm definitely not as tech savvy as my husband but I do want to keep up with what's out there. Anything to make the writing life easier! thanks for being here today Carol, and please put my name in for the draw.

    have a blessed day everyone!

  35. YAY! I'm back! I didn't sleep well all weekend, so I took the freshman (you know, the one I went driving with at the high school yesterday AAAAHHHHH!) and her saxophone to school then came home and went back to bed. Feeling MUCH better now :).

    Mary - ask away ;).

    Trixi - Hi! Good to see you over here! Yeah, if you don't do much work on the computer, Dropbox wouldn't necessarily be something you'd need. And bald writers would be bad ;).

    Hi Tina! Thank you so much for having me! InspyRomance is a blog for readers of Contemporary Christian Romance. We have 27 (? I think?) authors who write CCR. We share posts we think our readers will be interested in, including excerpts, reviews of other authors, interviews, where ideas came from, cover evolutions, etc. We do lots of giveaways (including two big ones a year, but lots of daily ones - and monthly Amazon cards to commenters).

  36. Inspy is all contemporary! Very cool.

  37. Carol, what do you use for full back up?

  38. Myra, you use two backup programs.

    Okay, now glad to hear someone else uses Carbonite. I really like it.

    Actually just got an email from Amazon about their storage program telling me I get free three months with my Prime Membership. Must check out the cost on that one.

  39. Mary - yep. Not something you necessarily need if you don't do a lot of computer work :).

    Tina - A quick Google search turns up something like 500,000 pages of text in a gigabyte. A lot fewer jpg files ;). I'm trying the paid version this year because I have A LOT of jpg files in there when I'm working on covers. I don't know that I'll continue it, though. This compares Dropbox, Google Drive, Box, Amazon Cloud Drive, and OneDrive. It would be really hard, but probably not impossible, to screw it all up but since it's all stored in the cloud, it would be hard to delete it all.

    Fedora - Nice to "meet" you! My pleasure!

    Ruthy - I don't use it for my cloud back up, just for all my writing stuff (which for me usually includes LOTS AND LOTS of jpgs which take lots of room). OneDrive and the others can work a lot like Dropbox depending on what you're doing, but tend to be a little more difficult to work with. And yes! That Tulsa trip was so fun! (I'm watching last week's NCIS btw. Not sure I love all the changes this year, though I am enjoying Bull...)

  40. Barb uses Carbonite too. Good!

    Video files. NOW THAT IS BRILLIANT. AOL is very stingy about how large a file you can send.

  41. Oh yes! Cookies to go with all the yummy Paneraness! Did you know they deliver now? One of the teachers at my son's school was trying to convince me that we needed to move closer to town so they'd deliver to me. When I reminded that would mean my son would have to switch schools, she told me to stay put ;). Our next move is going to be the final one - to the country in the same school district once my son is in middle school - since there's only one of them :D.

    Hi Cindy! Holler if you have any questions!

    Jill! Good to see you here! I'm told the average lifespan of a laptop is 3 years, but I'm terribly hard on my laptops. I'm hoping to get a desktop this year (I've finally set up a permanent officey area) and then my laptop should last longer ;).

    Hi, Jackie! I go for cheap laptops which probably doesn't help a whole lot, but there you have it!

    Hi Rose! Glad to see you!

  42. Hi Glynna! You can single things out by where you save them! Of course, you could also save letters to your grandma if you wanted! Most people would have plenty of room in there for that too ;).

    Hi Suzanne! EEK! Been there, done that! Dropbox and CrashPlan (or programs like them) can seriously save your sanity! Windows 10 can be hard to get used to. It partly depends on what you're upgrading from. Windows 7 was better, but it's light years ahead of 8/8.1.

    Sandra!!!!!! Good to see you my friend! That's a good idea with crit partners! I've never done that, but it makes so much sense! I used my daughter in part because she fits the description (except the eye color which I learned how to change), but also because the character is 15 in the book - and I'd love to write more about her when she grows up, so I decided it was a good idea to keep my model close to home ;).

  43. Great post, Carol! I was introduced to Dropbox very early in my writing journey, and I'm thankful for it. :)

    I don't know if this has been mentioned yet, but here's one thing I do. I work on a Mac. So, I save my work on my Mac in Pages format, and then I "Export" it to Dropbox as a word document. This way I can work on it from any computer we have. :)

    Dropbox has definitely saved me a few times when I had computer issues. And when one of my (PC) laptops had to be in the shop for a few weeks, I could still work on my manuscript because it was on Dropbox, which was synced with our desktop.

    Dropbox is a wonderful thing!! :)

  44. Oh, I do have one other backup system--iCloud. I pay 99 cents a month for 50GB of storage. This covers my entire Photos library, my iPhone & iPad, plus several other Apple programs/apps.

    Time Machine backs up to an external hard drive attached to my MacBook. It backs up everything once an hour.

  45. That's a great plan, Pam! Using it to share files when someone needs them! Yes, basically, just anything you save in the Dropbox folder is backed up to the cloud and any other computers you have connected to it. If you don't have internet access for whatever reason, then you work away on your file and next time you connect (you know, when your satellite is realigned ;)), it'll upload the new versions of your files to the cloud and sync them with any other computers attached. And yes, you are working on your hard drive at all times ;). So they're saved locally and when you connect also in the cloud.

    The exception would be if you're working on a device like an iPad or something similar. They would save locally and upload too, but it doesn't keep EVERYTHING on that drive, just whatever you're specifically working on. Does that make sense? So in my Scrivener app on my iPad, the ONLY thing I can access is the Scrivener folder for my present WIP. (It's easy to change, but generally one at a time.)

    Janet!! Hello, dear! It's my pleasure to help out! I'm so glad you love the look and sound of Grace to Save!

    Caryl - my pleasure! Have a wonderful day!

  46. Marianne - there you go!!!! Look at you!!!! If you're not someone who works or shares the work on your computer often, it's not as useful, but you can also save family pics on there - say after a birthday party or family reunion, and share them from there rather than trying to email them to everyone.

    Barbara - I was for a LONG time. Travis in Grace to Save was named after my favorite manager at my favorite Panera. He was killed in a car accident not long after I finished my first draft :(. Recently, though, I have some friends who live just a couple miles away out in the country. They have a rec room they can lock from the inside of the house so people can get into the room but not the house. As long as it's not in use for game night or yarn dyeing or something, I'm welcome to set up there and work as long as I want - and no closing time ;). It's much cheaper that way too :D. Thank you for keeping us updated on Sandie and of course, I'll say hi!

    I did have a friend do that with a video recently, but I don't share a whole lot of them so it's not a usage I think of often.

    Missy - LOL! I can understand that! Documents BELONG IN THE DOCUMENTS FOLDER, amIright?! It's all still there ;). Just in the "wrong" spot!

    Hi Vince! To be honest, it's been a LONG time since I looked at the TOS for Dropbox. I know I've heard "around" that they're very safe from hacking, but let me Google in a bit and see what I can find out. The next book in the TUESDAYS OF GRACE series is Grace to Redeem - not entirely certain what the other 1-2 will be but will probably follow the Grace to... format :). Because they all open on 9/11, they'll release in August or so each year.

  47. Sherida - I understand that panic! Yes, having multiple options to work is GREAT without having to email yourself the file (or transfer via thumbdrive) and making sure you save it in the right place and over the right file or name it right so you don't end up opening the wrong one next time... ugh. ;)

    Hi Myra! That's a great plan! Moving all the stuff you're done with out of Dropbox is a great idea! I'm not quite there yet ;). Of course, as an indie, I tend to go back to certain files a lot to update the book list or whatever.

    Hi, Laurie! ANYTHING online is subject to the potential of hacking, but as I mentioned to Vince above, I'll do some Googling and see what I can find. My guess is that it was still there SOMEWHERE but maybe not where you expected it? And if you're not familiar with how Dropbox works, it would be easy to search in the wrong spots (BTDT!). Dropbox is definitely easier than lugging thumb drives around, IMO :). I'll be back in a bit and see what I can find.

  48. Tina - I use CrashPlan for my full backup. My sister and I share their family and friends program (or whatever it's called). She has multiple terabytes of media to back up and it's nice that I can download a movie from hers if I want to (though I don't often). There was nothing WRONG with Carbonite, but it didn't back up anything connected via USB (like an external hard drive or my sister's Drobos where her media is stored). Most emails are stingy with how big a file you can send.

    Jeanne! Hi my friend! Sounds like you're very familiar with it! Good for you! And yes - saving as a doc makes it much more mobile!

    Myra - we don't use iCloud, though maybe we should since all of us are on the same iTunes account (5 phones - for now).

    ARGH! My NCIS stopped playing back! (and apparently I'm having connectivity issues which means I can't post this right now) AHHH! Must mean I have to get some work done :P.

    I'm learning how to use Dragon Dictation to transcribe my WIPs. I see people talking about getting 3-5K an HOUR regularly and decided it's something I need to learn to do. Because All The Books want to get written ;). And an indie's sales live or die by how often you release books... (don't tell anyone, but I actually OUTLINED the rest of this story in hopes that transcribing it will go faster).

    WHEW! NCIS and my internet are back!

  49. Here is the help topics about security. Lots of answers. A chat box popped up and Travis the rep said this:

    Security is our top priority. To start, we use SSL for data transfer, creating a secure tunnel between Dropbox applications and our infrastructure. Then, we encrypt your data with 256-bit AES encryption in transit and at rest. We also break down all the files into 4MB blocks and store the blocks in a separate server than the metadata of those files.

    (My note: the files are unencrypted on your hard drive, but encrypted in storage online.)

    This is their "Is Dropbox safe to use?" answer.

    Something I forgot to note earlier, they store 30 days of previous versions so if you accidentally save over a file, you should be able to recover the original version for a month.

    This is a PC Mag article on how to make it more secure. It links to an article about a data breach in 2012 and Dropbox's statement on what they're doing to beef it up in 2014. The PC World article points out that one issue for many people is the use of weak passwords, so make sure your passwords are up to snuff.

  50. This article goes into more detail about the date breach in 2012 - someone was able to access a file with SOME email addresses associated with Dropbox but never any of the stored data. It compares the security with the other options mentioned above - and points out that for Dropbox, it's relatively easy to unlink devices no longer in use (like an old phone, tablet, or laptop). This article also points out that two-step verification makes any storage system like this much more secure.

  51. (This comment was supposed to go before the last one, but apparently it didn't "take"...)

    Here is the help topics about security. Lots of answers. A chat box popped up and Travis the rep said this:

    Security is our top priority. To start, we use SSL for data transfer, creating a secure tunnel between Dropbox applications and our infrastructure. Then, we encrypt your data with 256-bit AES encryption in transit and at rest. We also break down all the files into 4MB blocks and store the blocks in a separate server than the metadata of those files.

    (My note: the files are unencrypted on your hard drive, but encrypted in storage online.)

    This is their "Is Dropbox safe to use?" answer.

    Something I forgot to note earlier, they store 30 days of previous versions so if you accidentally save over a file, you should be able to recover the original version for a month.

    This is a PC Mag article on how to make it more secure. It links to an article about a data breach in 2012 and Dropbox's statement on what they're doing to beef it up in 2014. The PC World article points out that one issue for many people is the use of weak passwords, so make sure your passwords are up to snuff.

  52. Yes. I did see that Carbonite doesn't do external drives or multiple PCs.

    But for me that's not an issue. I love seeing those tiny dots that show things are backed up.

    Now the video and Dropbox thing!!! I can share wedding videos with people who don't have access to my iPhone shared cloud files. Hurrah.

  53. And on a random note. I didn't know you were repped by Tamela Hancock Murray. Congratulations. Planning on doing some traditional publishing in the future?

  54. Funny, I have heard all the issues with Windows 10, but I love it. Hubs showed me just last night that there is another cool feature I never knew existed. You can have two desktops.

    See that icon second from left in the task bar? Click on it.

    What a great idea. I could just put Dropbox there and my manuscripts. Then I use that dedicated desktop when writing. Preventing distractions for sure.

  55. So my comment with links about security keeps disappearing :p. So it's now posted here on my website.

    Tamela signed me with Grace to Save about 2.5 years ago. It had some interest but didn't sell, so I went indie. I think I'm technically on her inactive list. I won't rule out trad, but it would have to be the right deal on the right terms because indie is quite literally changing my family's future (like that country house someday and the fact that I'm not working and paying for braces and vision therapy for one kiddo who desperately needed it, but it's NOT cheap - and getting my eyes fixed!!! Which mostly just matters to me ;)).

    I was part of a Ryan Zee promotion a couple weeks ago. They just shared an Excel file with me via Dropbox with the newsletter sign ups obtained during the promotion.

  56. You're no longer teaching??? Wonderful that you are so successful with your indie career!!!

  57. Officially, I'm taking the fall off, but getting back in is always questionable (though my boss said I'm welcome). The plan was to write full time. Then I promptly took a six week sabbatical ;). After 11 novels* and 5 novellas in 22 months, I needed a break.

    But yes, I've made more money this year than I have in my life (keeping in mind I've never worked a "regular" full time job after graduating college - and before that was fast food...)

    *All but 2-3 had at least a rough draft written (or mostly written) before I started indie publishing in 11/14, but still.

  58. Carol I think the sabbatical was a great idea.
    I'm so impressed by your hard work and success with indy publishing. It's so encouraging!

  59. The only time I've ever used Dropbox in a serious way was with my daughter's wedding, about? Two summers ago? One summer ago? Can't remember...I must finally be emotionally healed!

    She, my daughter that is, would put all sorts of stuff in Dropbox and I could go in and look at it and add stuff. It worked pretty well for an intense six months (length of her engagement). Then I sort of forgot all about it again.

  60. I think I should take a sabbatical........except I dont' have time. grrrrrr
    But maybe a long drive in the country would be similar...which is good because I have to give a speech tonight.

  61. A speech that is a long drive in the country from me!

    (Carol I think cookies would be a nice sabbatical!)

  62. Carol, I needed this blog post. Thank you!

    Okay, here's my problem. Hubby and I traveled to Poland with a group from church. One of the guys downloaded his photos to Dropbox, which I saved to my computer. My Dropbox filled up due to the pics.

    What can I do now to free up the space in Dropbox and still save the pics? How can I move them to my computer?

    If I clear the photos from my Dropbox, will I have enough space to save my documents there?

    Can you tell that I'm totally clueless?

    Thanks for any help you can provide, Carol!!!

    Hugs! So fun seeing you at ACFW!!!

  63. So I used Dropbox for awhile then quit. I don't even remember why but after reading this, I'm going to organize my files and try to utilize more of the things it can do! Thank you!

  64. Sherrinda! So good to see you! I still remember reading your manuscript here in Seekerville and being blown away by your writing! What are you up to?

  65. 11 books and five novellas? Oh, my gosh. Yeah. Take a break. Give your fingers a break.

  66. Mary - thank you! I'm continually amazed at how well it's going! We take a friend of my high schooler's home once a week. He lives a half mile down a gravel road (which is probably halfway in town compared to where you live). But my kids have a doc appt on Wednesday this week, which means no country drive...

    Debby - easy peasy! Just move them from your Dropbox to another location on your hard drive! A specific file in your Pictures Library for instance :).

    Sherrinda - good luck!

    Tina - this is why I'm trying to learn Dragon Dictation ;). Plus the speed I hear about people getting all. the. time.

  67. I'll check the moderation of comments box and see if your comment is there, Carol.

  68. Found your comments. They are live now. Sorry about that. Blogger!!!

  69. Carol, this is very interesting. I need to come up with a good backup plan. But I get nervous when I hear about any problems people have had with it. I definitely need to look into all the options.

    Please enter me in the drawing!

  70. Thanks for all the information! I really need to back up all my photos to an online service as well so I'm glad you shared the link for that article!

  71. Sandy, give those free trials a shot. Better to start now then have to salvage a crashed computer. The older your computer gets the greater the risk is.

  72. And Heidi here is the link to the Amazon storage program for photos.

  73. "Debby - easy peasy! Just move them from your Dropbox to another location on your hard drive! A specific file in your Pictures Library for instance :)."

    Do you mean drag and drop or right click and then click on the drop down menu SEND TO.

  74. Yes. You can do either or :). Usually that will COPY them to the new location. Once you verify they are saved on your hard drive in the new location, you can delete them from Dropbox.

  75. Someone had mentioned Google Drive. I don't remember what was said without going back to look at all the comments, but I had never thought to use that. I just now downloaded my book manuscript to it. Won't that be accessible if something happens to my computer?

  76. Hi Carol,

    I love Dropbox and have been using it to synch my devices for a number of years. I have a curious question that I wonder if you've encountered. It's happened to me a number of times and I can never figure out why.

    I'll have a file open on my laptop (or desktop - the order doesn't matter), save it, close it, and then later open it on the other device. Every once in a while, the word count is different. I'll close it, go back to the other computer and open it - and back to the original word count.

    I don't know if it's some glitch. Honestly, I thought I was going mad!!! Now I just kind of shrug, but I am still curious.

  77. Wait! I have a question for Debby. Make sure it's really a copy in your Dropbox, and not a shared Dropbox folder. We had a problem with a group I belong to where they put a folder like that in Dropbox for us, but if anyone took the files out, they then only existed in that person's computer and no one else could see them.

    :( Sorry to complicate things.

  78. What does this term mean??

    "have been using it to synch my devices."

    Splain in English.

  79. Wow! Lots of good information in this post. I definitely need to save this post! Thanks for sharing.

  80. What does this term mean??

    "have been using it to synch my devices."

    Splain in English.

    It's the message Dropbox gives me when I open a new device.

    So, for example, if I'm working on my laptop and save the file I'm working on to Dropbox, when I open my desktop computer, I get a little message that says the file as been synched, which basically means I can now open it and be at the exact place where I left off on my laptop,

    For me, this convenience is the best reason for using Dropbox. If you use the same computer all the time, it wouldn't be as helpful, but since I might be writing on my laptop, or iPad, or desktop, it helps to have it actually be the same file without having to email back and forth.

    Did that splain any better?

  81. CAROL M, thanks for PAM, I remembered that I pay 99 cents a month for iCloud storage for my iPhone and since most of my pictures are there, am I good to just have DropBox and my external hard drive of course?

    I want to try to sync my laptop with my desktop via DropBox and see what happens.

    Have had a fun afternoon shopping with our granddaughter who is on Fall Break. Who says you can't buy love? KIDDING!!! :-)


  82. Yes. Thank you. I knew what syncing was but had no idea Dropbox could do this!@!!

  83. Great post, Carol - checking into DropBox and CrashPlan right now. May be giving you a call if I have any questions. Moms are allowed to do that, you know.

  84. Okay, CAROL, you absolutely have to come back to Seekerville and write a post about your Indie career and how you market your books!!! Inquiring minds NEED to know.

  85. Thank you, Carol! As usual, I learned something brand new at Seekerville today :-) Btw, I'm also a big Castle and NCIS fan. Sad that one is gone, and the other has changed so much.

    And I love Dr Pepper, too. For a good many years I lived in a town that had the oldest Dr Pepper bottling plant in the world - Dublin, Texas (plant opened in 1891). And Dublin was only an hour or so down the road from Waco, Texas, where Dr Pepper was created (in the 1880s). Lest anyone think I forgot the period in doctor, I was told by newspaper editors that I couldn't use it when I was writing about the soft drink...and I wrote a lot of stories through the years about Dr Pepper and the bottling plant, so that rule really stuck with me, LOL.

    Your daughter is lovely, and your book sounds so interesting! Thanks again for sharing your information and tips about Dropbox!!

  86. Many reasons to look more into Dropbox. I'll put that on my todo list! Thanks. :)

  87. Excellent post, Carol. I've been using Dropbox for about three years, and I love it!

  88. Carol did do a post on indie. It's in the archives under Carol Moncado.

    But Barbara, you are right, we need an update. What I've Learned type of post.

    Okay, Carol, email me and we will get you on the schedule.

    Great idea!

  89. WHO KNEW??? Dr Pepper has no period.

    Taste my first DP in the army. And when I lived in Oklahoma everyone drinks it.

    It's the only soft drink at my house. DP, caffeine free and diet.

    Is it true it was first made with prunes?

  90. Carol, out of curiosity, what's been the release timing on your indie stuff.

  91. Interesting post. I don't actually have Dropbox, though.

  92. Tina, the owners of the Dublin bottling plant denied the prune juice story, and I believed them. The elderly man who owned the plant always made me laugh. One time he said that his wife was worried about him consuming too much sugar. He didn't want to cut back on his beloved Dr Pepper, so he started making his own. He used pure cane sugar but actually bottled them in bottles labeled sugar free, LOL. I don't think his wife ever found out.

  93. Jan - you can always call me, Mama! Questions or not!

    Barbara - This is the post I did about 18mos ago. It's before I hit it big at all though. Not sure I'm the right one to do it though. It's been an amazing amount of God's grace to hit an underserved sub-genre of CCR at the right time.

    Laura - I had a contest entry get counted off for not having the period in Dr Pepper so I rolled my eyes and added it back in for the next contest. And promptly got counted off for having it in there :p.

    Hi Megan! Thanks for stopping by!

    Rhonda - glad it's working for you!

    Tina - on it! My release schedule has been kind of all over the place :/. That's part of what I'm working toward on this sabbatical. Getting my head right for getting on a better schedule. My summer was (relatively) abysmal because I went from March 1 to Sept. 15 without a novel release (okay - I super-soft launched GRACE to Save Aug. 28 I think it was but it barely made a dent in august's income). I'm learning as I go... consistency and speed (without sacrificing quality) are key.

    Nicky - thanks for stopping by!

  94. Laura - that's HILARIOUS!!! I love it!!!

  95. Hi Tina! You are way too kind. I have taken a long break from writing and have ventured into lettering and selling art on Etsy. But I have been itching to write again and have been lurking around here to start learning again. This blog is the best!

  96. Okay, I've been washing pumpkins today.... hundreds of them to help get ready for a country club harvest festival order... but now I'm back with a dropbox question, Carol!!!

    I just got a list of lovely people who've indicated they want to sign up for my newsletter....

    But it's in Dropbox in a two-column spreadsheet design.

    So Carol, smart techy gal, is there a way I can easily bring those names and e-mails into my e-mail account or do I have to do it one by one?

    I'm so glad you're here today, even if you can't help me, I FEEL LIKE I ASKED AN EXPERT!!!

  97. Good info Carol, thanks for sharing today!

    I have an external hard drive that I use to back stuff up frequently. "Save early, save often." :)

    But I also email to myself. HA!

    I've used Dropbox to share art files with my illustrator.

    Love that you used a photo of your daughter on the cover! How much fun is THAT?!
    Congrats on all your success. See you on FB soon!!

    Happy happy 9th to Seekerville!!

  98. Okay I have been knowing I need to back up all my writing on my computer but haven't been sure how to do this. I will try drop box now. I will read and print all this so I can read later the details. I have been gone all day for a ride on the blue ridge parkway. Hopefuly this will be an answer.

  99. Carol Moncado said...
    Travis in Grace to Save was named after my favorite manager at my favorite Panera. He was killed in a car accident not long after I finished my first draft

    So this IS that book! What a lovely 'remembrance.'

    Thanks for all the (totally understandable) info about Dropbox, Carol. Bookmarking this post for future help.

    Nancy C

  100. Thanks for sharing this info. with us, Carol. A friend had suggested I use Dropbox but I really wasn't familiar with what to do - - so this is helpful!
    CONGRATS on your books!!
    (By the way - - were you at ACFW this past August? I don't remember seeing you, but then again I wasn't wearing my glasses, LOL!).
    Blessings, Patti Jo :)

  101. Hi Carol, So happy to see you also. ANd I'm thinking of those cookies your brought to the conference and wishing I had one right now. smile

    I'm so proud of you and your indie success. I'm gathering from your comments that it is fast consistent publishing that makes it go? Am I getting that right? I know you really put out a lot of great books that you had ready to go. Congrats and best wishes. Glad you're taking a break. I was reminded this morning in my devotions that our God took a rest on the seventh day so if He needs a rest, guess we do also. chuckle.

    Looking forward to seeing what you come up with next.


  102. Carol!!!
    1st-- I keep your books on my kindle in the "Favorites" collection!!! :)
    2nd-- Drop Box is Great for collaboration! But I need to do more. Thanks!

    *Please put me in the drawing!

  103. Ruthy - hmm... I'd have to see it because I'm not quite sure what you mean. Is it in an excel file and you want them in your newsletter list on MailChimp or MailerLite or whatever service you use? Shoot me an email (or - hey! - share the file with me via Dropbox!) and we'll see what we can figure out ;). I'm sure it can be done!

    Hi KC and May! So glad to see you! Save early. Save often! That's a GREAT mantra!

    Wilani - I hope this has been helpful!

    Nancy - Yes! I know we talked about it here on Seekerville in the comments both as I was SpeedBoing that year and also after Travis was killed in a car accident. The book is dedicated to his memory and to his "prairie married" girlfriend and kids.

    Patti Jo - I was there! I feel like I saw you in passing/from a distance. I felt like there were a lot of people I didn't see though...

    Sandra! Yes, fast and consistent is the key to doing well as an indie - especially one without a reader base. Someone like Tamara Leigh or Melissa Tagg or several others I'm blanking on right now who have some significant name recognition to start with will have an easier time and be able to "get away with" a longer period of time between releases - and it's still generally faster than trad pub does. Your average romance reader (the stats hold but in smaller overall numbers for Christian romance as a subgenre of romance) are avid readers who read a minimum of 20-25 books a year. Some who read 3-4 a week*. Every week. They love the lower prices indies tend to offer as well as the rapid availability. It's not for everyone, but for those who can make it work, it can be FANTASTIC.

    My third kiddo's last vision therapy appointment was today. Just check ups from here on out. Over the last year, it's cost more than I would have made this semester if I'd been teaching. Toss two kids in braces on top of that, plus musical instruments, and I honestly don't know how we'd be paying for all of it without the indie income. We'd find a way but...

    Jana! So good to see you! I'm so glad to hear that! I hope you enjoy this one when you read it!

    *So fun story... After ACFW in Nashville, I spent a day with a second cousin I've known for nearly 20 years but had never met in person. A couple weeks ago, her aunt (my dad's first cousin) was talking to another second cousin (the aunt's daughter).

    Aunt: Hey! You have a cousin who's a writer!
    Other Second Cousin: Really? Who?
    A: Carol M-O-N-C...
    OSC: CAROL MONCADO?!?!?!?!!?! I love her books!!!! She's a cousin?!?!?!

    Cue friend request and long Facebook convos! She reads a minimum of 3-4 books a week and had read all of mine through spring (missed 3-4 I think) after her FIL had a major stroke.

    By the way, if you watch Walking Dead, the milk cows belong to said second cousin ;). One of her daughters has had a small part and that daughter plus her son (she has three girls then a boy - and both boys have the same name, and two daughters have Margaret in their names) have small parts this year.

    Did I mention my son will be on the cover of my next novel release?!

  104. Family covers. Love it.

    Put the dog on too. hahaha. I should put my cat on a cover.

  105. Haha! I should have put him on the last one as he's a character in DISCOVERING HOME ;). Maybe someday!

  106. (And actually, my niece and nephew-in-love are on the next cover too, with my son. I have a friend who wants to be on the cover of one sometime. One of my oldest daughter's band friends wants to be too. And the LIFEGUARD covers are pics of the same girl (one front, one from behind) and two different lifeguards at our local pool.)

  107. I use Dropbox all the time, but only for work. Customers use it to send me documents they're uncomfortable about emailing to me. I've never thought about using it for my writing.

  108. Hi Carol. Very late to post. I used dropbox when I was a visiting Instructor at a University so the animation students could send me their large files. Unfortunately, after the semester ended, the school disconnected my email without warning, so I've had trouble being able to sign up again, because I can't remember the password to the cut-off account. Any ideas? Maybe I should try again.

  109. Hi Carol. Very late to post. I used dropbox when I was a visiting Instructor at a University so the animation students could send me their large files. Unfortunately, after the semester ended, the school disconnected my email without warning, so I've had trouble being able to sign up again, because I can't remember the password to the cut-off account. Any ideas? Maybe I should try again.

  110. Cool post, btw. I LOVE your books, so please put my name in the draw.

  111. Ahem...
    Dogs on the cover you say?
    Been there... Done that! ;)

    The *real* May IS our cover girl extraordinaire for her May the K9 Spy books! But of course! No one else would do.
    Power to the paw!!!!

    Ok everypawdy, ttfn

    And congrats, Carol, on all you're doing.
    Prayers continue for your family too.

    (And loved that photo of you and your daughter in the car. HA! Special prayers for that!!)

  112. CAROL!!! I'm late, I'm late for a VERY important date!! Forgive me, sweetie, for coming by so late, but I actually read your INCREDIBLE post this morning and then again tonight, and I think I may just have to read it a few more times to absorb all the information included. Wow, girlfriend, you really did your homework!

    I will admit that the whole Dropbox thing does intimidate me, no matter how easy you make it sound, because I am not technical at all and lucky to figure out both Facebook and Twitter. But you make some valid points, so I will definitely consider utilizing Dropbox in the future, but don't be surprised if you get a HELP!! email, okay?

    And you want to hear something really funny? I just found out TODAY that I have Dropbox account and didn't know it. Apparently my hubby set it up, but I guess after this blog today, I'll have to learn how to use it. A formatter sent me a link to Dropbox so I could retrieve a cover she made for me, and THAT'S how I discovered I have it. And, yes, I really AM that stupid when it comes to stuff like this.

    I have to be honest and say that after reading all the comments, I feel more stupid than ever. Am I the only one who doesn't understand this yet?

    Okay ... off to read your blog for the third time to try to absorb and learn.


  113. Walt - hope it works for you!!!

    Deb - contact customer support? That's all I got there :/. So glad you enjoy the books!!!

    KC - love that the pics are of May!!!

    Julie!!! Road trip?!?! I would totally come see you and help you out! It's not that far! Plus we could do lunch or whatevz and hang out for a few hours ;).

  114. Hi Carol

    I've used both Dropbox and Google Drive and I'll take Dropbox any day!

    Please enter me in for the drawing!

  115. Carol Moncado, you have done a public service today!! Thank you!!!!

  116. Carol, your words are brilliant....

    And I'm laughing at myself because I was looking for a way to import into gmail... and not the service provider for the newsletters. But I've proven that I'm educable, LOL!

    Thank you so much for being here today, I still don't understand Dropbox (although I use Google docs often now for group things and I think they're similar in some ways) and when I signed up for One Drive, then it became my laptop's choice for importing things... so it nudged Dropbox into a second place ALL BY ITSELF. Which means the power of Microsoft rages on!

    But I've got a clearer view of capabilities and I love that!

    AND COOKIES!!!!! Carol Moncado cookies rock!

  117. Great article! (Also, it's wonderful to meet someone who goes through computers as often as I do :)

  118. Hi Carol. This was an interesting article for me because I really don't (or didn't) know much about DropBox. Thanks for sharing!

  119. I've been using the free DropBox for a couple of years, and it has saved my bacon again recently after a hard drive crash. I'm getting messages that I'm pushing the 2 GB limit and should pay up for the larger version, so I deleted a lot of photos that shouldn't have been there anyway. Copied them onto a CD.

    A whole, long book is so few KB compared to a photo. 2 GB is LOTS of room for text files.

    TIP: Don't forget your DropBox password. Write it down in a permanent place so you can access DropBox in case of a crash.

    Someone said that if you delete a file on your computer which is also saved on DropBox, DropBox will also delete it. Say it ain't so.

  120. Thanks for the information on Dropbox! Your story looks so intriguing, Carol!

  121. I love DropBox. When someone tries to share files with me that will not go through email, I always tell them about DropBox. It is so easy to share files with others. I need to look into the way you discussed of getting more storage space.
    Thank you,
    Becky Boerner

  122. Ruthy - did you get it to work then? My guess it's either an Excel file or a comma delimited file which you should be able to import into your newsletter website (or save the Excel file AS a comma delimited file and THEN import). Holler if you need help.

    Sherri! So glad I'm not the only one. I've finally set up an office in my living room. I have an office area in the basement but I don't use it. Ever. And there's no desk or anything, just moving my laptop down there. So I'm hoping for a deal on a desktop tower on Black Friday ;).

    Hi, Rebecca! Thanks for stopping by!

    You too, Beth Erin!

    Becky - I've got a zip file I uploaded to Dropbox last night that I'm sharing with some friends today ;).

  123. Thank you for those tips, Carol. I thought I knew a lot about Dropbox, but I've learned even more. You are so right about the beauty of it.

    I've been using Dropbox for about a year (upgraded to the 1 T plan) and wouldn't take anything for it. Once I understood how it worked, I moved every single file out of "Documents" and into the "Dropbox" folder and totally operate from there. It is very user friendly and I have complete peace of mind, knowing that nothing will ever be lost or inaccessible.

  124. Not to familiar with Dropbox..
    Happy Birthday Seekerville!

  125. Wow, I have to say, your story sounds really interesting!

  126. I love, love, LOVE Dropbox! My entire hard drive lives in DB of my MacBook Pro lives there. I pay for the updated amount of space, but at $100/yr for just over 1TB of space I'm more than happy. My entire iTunes folder, all my photos, my Documents folder, and of course, all my books live there. :)

    I have a few shared folders: one with my crit partners. This is how we sub/crit. Saves emailing each other. We also share writing craft files, conference notes, and whatever takes our fancy. We then chat about those files/crits on Facebook's Messanger. I have a shared folder with my hubby, and I used to have one with my parents (super easy to share pics of the grandkids!).

    I've used the restore feature of Dropbox (it keeps a record of all deleted files for up to 3mths) MANY times to restore a file that I accidentally deleted or lost somehow. This, to me, is it's best feature!

    Being able to access my entire computer's hard drive from anywhere is invaluable. If my house burnt down or my laptop is stolen I haven't lost anything off my computer. Whew! Peace of mind. :)

  127. forgot to add that you can share large video files to friends/family using DB as well. Upload the video to DB and then just text, email, or message the link to them. Easy peasy! Saves so much data that way.