> - bearing in mind >I will start saving the original NEF prior to any editing.) >
Why? The original data is never altered when you save an edit. All your edits are saved as steps, but the data is not changed. When you reload the image back into the software, the steps are reapplied to the data.
You can save the edited image, then come back in a year and delete the steps..... and you're back to the original SOOC image.