Favourite TV Shows mentioned in Diane McGyver’s Northern Survival novel

Northern SurvivalWe all have our favourite television shows, and author Diane McGyver is no different. She grew up watching shows in the 70s and 80s. In a scene from Northern Survival, McGyver mentions several of her favourites.

Here’s the clip. Olive and John have been lost for many days, and they stumble upon an abandoned cabin in the middle of the wilderness. As they approach, they talk about who might own the cabin.

The structure, no more than 20 by 20 feet, had a covered porch and one window on the front. A pair of snowshoes were attached to the wall to the left of the door and two chairs rested to the right as if the occupants would walk out at any moment and enjoy their evening with a cup of tea. A stone chimney consumed a section of the right side of the cabin. Beside it was a crude table with a stool next to it.

John stepped on to the porch, and the wood creaked. “This is not the time to discuss The Cabin in the Woods.”

“Didn’t see it.”

He cast her a raised eyebrow. “Lucky you.”

“I prefer shows like Grizzly Adams, The Waltons, Little House on the Prairie. Dusty Trails.”

“Let’s hope the owners are as friendly as the folks in those shows.”


Two Paths to Completing that First Draft

Coming Soon

The first draft of any novel is like climbing a mountain that has its peak concealed in thick clouds. Many people start writing it but few finish. There’s many reasons for the lack of success. If you’ve completed your first draft, congratulations. Take a moment and bathe in the beauty of reaching the top of the mountain, breaking through the cloud cover and feeling the sun on your skin.

While writers may not understand why they failed to finish the first draft, one reason might be the use of the wrong technique. There are as many ways to write a book as there are writers. Don’t let anyone tell you differently. You have to find your way to write the novel. It won’t be the way your English teacher told you how to do it. It won’t be the way the famous writer you met at his book signing did it. The author giving the workshop in the community hall has a different way than you to write a novel.

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How a Plane Crash and a Parachute Inspired “Swallowed”

When Quarter Castle Publishing asked Isla Jane what had inspired her to write Swallowed, this is what she had to say.

I saw a video on YouTube by a man who had crashed his plane in the remote wilderness of Quebec. He survived because his plane had a parachute. I’d never heard of such a thing, so I did a little research on the subject and found CAPS, which stands for Cirrus Airframe Parachute System. As the website states, “The parachute system is designed to protect occupants in the event of an emergency by lowering the aircraft to the ground after deployment.”

Cool. Right? That’s what I thought.

Matt Lehtinen, the pilot who crashed and was stranded in the remote area of the province, shot a Vlog to capture his experience. He was rescued after only five hours but WOW, what an adventure.

My imagination absorbed the information and the energy from the video and the story took shape within minutes. It took much longer to write: 25 days.

Swallowed – A story about survival in the remote wilderness will be available spring 2020.

Northern Survival: Coming Spring 2020

Diane McGyver has a secret. (Psst; don’t tell her family) She’s written another book. She’s super excited about it, and here at Quarter Castle Publishing, we’re excited for her. It’s been read, enjoyed and accepted for publication.

Now the waiting begins. It’s scheduled for release in September 2020, and we have an exclusive sneak peak of the first scene to share with readers. It’s still in it’s raw form, so expect things to change as production continues.

Northern Survival is the story of survival after a plane crashes and two strangers must work together to find their way out of the vast wilderness of Northern Ontario.

“Yeah. Rod speaking.” Rod pressed the receiver firmly against his ear and with his hand over his other ear, blocked noise from the plane testing its engine. “Last flight leaves in ten.”

“Can she get aboard?” came the administrator’s voice on the other end.

“It’s a private flight.”

“Can you ask?”

“What’s the emergency?”

“Her mother’s dying. She needs to get home.”

Rod gritted his teeth and glanced out the large hangar door at the pilot of the four-man plane and his two passengers. The pilot wasn’t the problem; the arrogant bastard from California who financed the short expedition to Northern Ontario and who had rubbed him the wrong way since arriving two days earlier was the real issue. The business associate he’d brought along to document his excursion was approachable enough, but Johnathan Stone, the biggest name these days in Hollywood would brush him off without giving him a chance to ask.

“There’s a flight leaving tomorrow afternoon,” said Rod. “How close to death is her mother?”

“She’s 91; she’s courting it.”

“Damn.” He rubbed the dark stubble on his chin. This wasn’t the first time he’d solicit a ride in an emergency, but it was the first time he hesitated because of one man.

“It won’t hurt to ask,” said the administrator. “All they can do is say no.”

“Yeah. Give me a sec.” Before he set the phone down, a thought came to mind. “She won’t be able to take luggage. There’s no room.” For a two-day trek to the north, the two Californians had packed enough provisions and gear to stay six months. “We’ll ship it out on tomorrow’s flight.”

“No problem. Just ask before that plane leaves.”

Rod set down the phone and jogged across the runway to where the pilot did his final checks and the two passengers gabbed and took selfies of themselves and the plane.

“Excuse me.” Rod came to a stop in front of the man who had the power to give the okay. “Mr. Stone, we have an emergency.”

“Emergency?” Johnathan Stone lowered his phone, which was only a glorified camera in Summer Beaver with no cell service. “What type?”

“A woman needs to fly out immediately. Her 91-year-old mother’s dying. She doesn’t have much time. Next flight is more than 24 hours away.” He rambled off the information quickly to prevent being cut off by the arrogant cuss. “No luggage. Just her.”

Mr. Stone made a face and looked at his associate. “Can we spare the room?”

“We can. It’s an honourable thing to do.”

Mr. Stone’s grimace deepened. “Ninety-one.” He huffed. “Making her daughter a plumpy, grey-haired, saggy-chinned 60-something broad who’ll chatter non-stop about dear old mom and every misery in her life the entire flight.” He tilted his head forward and peered over his glasses. “Three hours of dull conversation and whining Lord have mercy. She’ll need a shoulder to cry on. Still interested?”

“Could be worse.”

“She sits in back with you.” He turned to Rod. “We leave in ten. We wait for no one. If she’s here, she flies. If not…” He shrugged. “We’re not a taxi service.”

“Thank you, Mr. Stone.” You conceited ass. Rod rushed to the phone. “Get her up here now. He won’t wait, but he’ll take her if she’s here.”


“Tell her the company will be horrible, but it’s the best we can do in short notice.”

“Whose flight is it?”

“Mr. Johnathan Stone’s.” Sarcasm dripped on the line.

“Good grief.”

“Yeah.” Rod hung up and watched the scene on the tarmac. The middle-aged man who had sky-rocked to stardom with the movie Roads Apart was poking fun at his associate. Several words drifted in on the wind over the engine: stuffy elderly, gossiping hag, and wind bag full of complaints and gas… Obviously the 53-year-old didn’t think he’d age further. He probably thought marrying the 27-year-old model kept him young. What she saw in the man old enough to be her father was simple: money and fame. Giving him her fountain of youth was not in the deal.

Stay tuned as we share this exciting story with you in the months to come.