Seems my system board (or my mother board as my husband calls it) is bad. It's costing me almost as much as the computer did new, but a newer laptop would cost twice as much as the repair (since there are other options I would prefer to have - of course!). We decided to go the cheaper route. I just hope this board lasts longer than 17 months!
So, that means my data isn't lost. Just unavailable until I get my laptop back. And this is really teaching me a lesson, too. Everything associated with writing is on that laptop. My query, my list of agents I want to query to, my notes to all my books - past and future, my book (I do have book 1 and book 2 saved elsewhere - it's only book 3 I wasn't smart enough to save the day before and I don't have a copy of book 4 anywhere).
The FIRST thing I do when I get my laptop back (besides, maybe, kiss it?), is to copy everything from it to the computer that gets backed up. And I mean EVERYTHING! I raised an Eagle Scout for goodness sake. I know "Be Prepared" by heart. Now I should practice it!