Lee's Simmons Is Finalist In National Competition

Thursday, March 28, 2013 - by Tyler Beckett, Lee University
Dr. Bill Simmons
Dr. Bill Simmons

A novel written by Dr. Bill Simmons, a professor of New Testament and Greek studies at Lee University, is one of the finalists in a national Christian novelist competition. A story of faith in the early days of the United States of America, Simmons’ Seth Garner may receive CrossBook’s Publisher’s Choice publishing deal and see nationwide distribution. 

“[CrossBooks was] the first to read Seth Garner in its final form and their judgment was the first objective evaluation of the work I have received,” said Dr. Simmons. “It’s very rewarding that someone other than yourself thinks your story is worth reading.”

A significant part of Dr. Simmons’ decision to write the novel was a desire to make history real for the reader. Too often, he says, do students of history miss the “big picture.”

“Seth Garner portrays those critical historical moments that have made us who we are today,” said Dr. Simmons. “I have used Seth as the ‘human face’ to convey this fascinating narrative about our origins as a nation.”

Dr. Simmons has been a member of Lee’s faculty since 1986, teaching a wide variety of courses in the School of Religion. These have included Romans and Galatians, First and Second Corinthians, Prison Epistles, New Testament Greek, Luke-Acts, and many others. He also teaches graduate-level courses and is currently researching Pauline anthropology and cosmology.

While Seth’s development and growth in faith is central to the book’s story, the novel itself interacts with faith in a way that Dr. Simmons believes is unique to literature.

“Believers are, at a fundamental level, literary,” said Dr. Simmons. “Christian fiction, especially the kind that can convey powerful aspects of the faith in an interesting and enjoyable way, can add vitality and depth to the Christian journey. I hope that Seth Garner can accomplish this in some measure.”

CrossBooks is a division of LifeWay, a Church retail nonprofit and one of the largest in the world. CrossBooks was created in 2009 to allow Christian authors to participate in the publication of their work. While it is the authors themselves that seek out CrossBooks, the organization is dedicated to preserving the standard of theological and literary excellence their parent organization pursues. 

The winners of the contest will be announced Friday, April 15. To learn about the finalists and check for results, visit http://www.crossbooks.com/writingcontest/winners.aspx.


Walk At School Event At Red Bank Elementary Friday

Red Bank Elementary students have been participating in walk to school day events.   On Friday, the 5th graders are doing a surprise "flash mob" dance on the last song at 2 p.m.  (click for more)

Tennessee Releases 2014 State Report Card

The 2014 state Report Card­­­­, posted  Thursday  on the Tennessee Department of Education website, offers users the ability to view detailed breakdowns of last year’s student achievement growth and other important data points. The 2014 Report Card features a variety of tabs including growth or value-added data, accountability, and education climate. A College and ... (click for more)

Chickamauga Lock To Reopen As Soon As Next Thursday

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District  plans to reopen Chickamauga Lock to all navigation traffic as early as next Thursday. An inspection of the upper gate anchorage and a repair plan were completed today. Chickamauga Lock closed on Monday after a routine inspection revealed a crack in the anchorage of the upper gate. Lt. Col. John Hudson, commander ... (click for more)

Downtown Chattanooga Apartment Complex That Brought $3 Million Profit Exempt From Most Taxes Until 2022 Under PILOT

A downtown Chattanooga apartment complex that recently was sold at a $3 million profit is exempt from most property taxes through 2022 under a PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) agreement.   No payment of school taxes was included in the deal for Walnut Commons at Walnut Street and Aquarium Way.   The only taxes due on the property for the next eight ... (click for more)

A Vote For Education Is Critical In Tennessee

In a state where just 28 percent of eighth graders are proficient in math and 33 percent are proficient in reading according to national assessments, education is deserving of more attention in 2014 elections. Across the country, more parents are making informed decisions about their child’s education, but for Volunteer State parents without resources, choices are difficult to come ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My Garden In November

As the first day of November arrives today, it is cold enough in my garden to officially certify that fall has fell! There are even signs of ice on the ground but there is a bounty crop of acorns so, in keeping with our monthly tradition, some will get shiny acorns and others will get a chunk of cold ice: A SHINY ACORN for Patriots football coach Bill Belichick for scoffing at ... (click for more)