Publishing the true stories of fascinating Prairie People and Unsung Heroes

Welcome to the blog of Deana Driver of DriverWorks Ink, a book publishing company based in Saskatchewan, Canada.
We publish stories of inspiring, fascinating Prairie people and unsung Canadian heroes - written by
Prairie authors including Deana Driver. We also assist authors in self-publishing their work. Visit our website and buy our books at driverworks.ca.


Thursday, July 9, 2015

Send Us Your "Prairie Pilots' Stories"

In 2008, we released the book Prairie Pilot: Lady Luck Was On My Side – The Stories of Walter D. Williams, which contains 100 entertaining, inspiring, short stories written by the late Walter Williams of Kerrobert, Saskatchewan. Walter was an International Harvester dealer and a welder in the late 1940s and 1950s when he began using his two-seater Aeronca Chief airplane as a flying taxi service and unofficial air ambulance for many residents in his area.

This photo shows Walter Williams of Kerrobert, Saskatchewan, flying his beloved CF-EVO Aeronca Chief in the 1950s. The photo was taken from CF-DRY Piper Cub, owned by Norm Easton of Eston, Sask. 




Walter Williams flew pregnant women, doctors, RCMP officers, criminals, teachers, books, corpses, and friends to hospitals and other destinations – often in horrible weather or at night when he wasn’t supposed to be flying. Walter’s stories tell of him flying into storms and fog, landing in farmers’ fields, hunting coyotes from the air, and saving people’s lives by being the only available mode of transportation at the time. He had little regard for the rules of Transport Canada and often ignored common sense, thanking Lady Luck many times for helping him through risky situations.


Walter's CF-EVO struck a fence near Altario, SK on a failed takeoff in Fall 1948.


A snowplow clearing a road near Kerrobert, SK in the 1950s.

The late Walter Williams with his son David, standing by Walter's plane, about 1950.

Walter and Romona Williams, about 1975.


The Prairie Pilot book has been popular and went into a second printing in 2012. Men especially love this book - I tease them that they live vicariously through Walter’s crazier adventures - but it is a great read for men and women and anyone over age 12. Walter was definitely an unsung hero for that region of west-central Saskatchewan and east-central Alberta in the 1950s. He saved many lives and his short stories are proof of his heroism.

Since that book was published, for the last seven years, my husband/publishing partner Al Driver and I have enjoyed listening to the stories of other Prairie pilots. They have inevitably come back to us after reading Walter’s book to tell us about some of their own precarious flights and marvellous flying adventures. So we have decided to compile some of these stories into a new book that we hope to release in 2016.

Thus, if you are a Prairie pilot, or a Canadian pilot, or you know someone who is and has a story or two to tell, DriverWorks Ink invites you to share those short stories (or poems) for this non-fiction book tentatively titled Stories of Prairie Pilots.

We know that there are some incredible stories of flying danger, heroism, helping, joy, adventure, silliness, and more out there. We want to record and share these stories with our readers.

Please write your story or invite someone you know to share their story with us. Stories should be from 500 words to 1,500 words. Photos may be submitted upon acceptance of your story. Please provide details including your name, address, phone number, and email address, as well as the names, dates, location and other details of the people and places in your story.

It would be best to ask the permission of the people you are naming in your story before you send us the story, but it is most important that the story be true and not libellous. You can get around using real names by using phrases such as "a man I'll call Jim" or "a man I know." I'll help you with that process once we accept your story for publication in our book.

Please send your submissions before January 31, 2016, by email to: ddriver@sasktel.net or by mail to: DriverWorks Ink, 110 McCarthy Blvd. N., Regina, SK S4R 6A4.

Please phone DriverWorks Ink at 306-545-5293 if you have a story to share but you do not wish to write it yourself. I will be happy to do the writing and help you share your story in that way.

Please note that all submissions will be accepted but not all submissions will be published. Those whose stories are published will receive two complimentary copies of the book and will be able to purchase more copies at a 40% discount.

We may decide to make a donation from the book proceeds to a worthwhile charity, but we have not yet discussed that concept for this project.

Thank you in advance. We look forward to receiving your stories.

Happy Flying and Happy Writing!


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