Ramona Forrest kept busy after retiring from her career as an Registered Nurse. Having written a few stories while in college, she knew her writing was interesting. However, her English and grammar usage were poor at best, she said.
"It was not unusual to receive an "A" for content and a "C-" for my grammar."
Nevertheless, she determined to become an author. Undeterred when her first book, a real fantasy love story, and her next, Hannah, about a young girl who went West to marry a rancher, and altogether eight manuscripts didn't yet have a publisher.
"Jaded, and without hope," Ramona said, "I was delighted when Black Opal Books offered to publish my book, Stranger on the Tonto, a western set in 1893 Arizona."
One of the publisher's requirements was that Ramona join the internet writing, and critiquing group workshop at the University of Pennsylvania, Internet Writing Workshop.
"A positive experience it has been for me," she says. "They [members] are helpful, and for the most part, very kind. Black Opal Books saw enough improvement in my work, that they have taken all eight of my manuscripts thus far. Stranger on the Tonto is my first published work. Am I excited . . Yes!"
Stranger on the Tonto is available now at Black Opal Books, and will be available on e-books, Nook, at Amazon on Kindle.
"Maybe even in other places since it will be in Ingram's system and could be ordered by libraries, stores and such," Ramona said.
Ramona Forest's interesting background provides a wealth of experiences for her to draw on. She retired from a very active life of working in foreign countries, and in Arizona, plus extensive travel. She was lost in Kenya and rescued by Maasai tribesmen, and danced with an astronaut who walked on the moon.
She currently resides in Phoenix, Arizona, and enjoys family and friends.