Tell us about your book:

All In breaks some of the rules that are often assumed with Christian fiction, but please don’t be put off by that. The story is altogether evangelical; it’s about hope in the face of hopelessness. The central character is a young writer named Cami Taylor. To quote one reviewer, “Cami has it all, but underneath the façade, she’s fading fast.” Most readers have a strong emotional response to Cami, either relating to her and liking her, or disliking her because she’s self-absorbed and damaged.

But I’d really like to direct the focus of Christian readers to Kate Davis. Watch how Kate interacts with Cami and consider her motives. Kate is the real story: The story of friendship so strong that it looks like the love of the Father reaching, and reaching, and reaching as far as it takes to rescue one lost lamb. Kate’s is a story about what Spirit-led ministry might look like.

What inspired you to write your book?

For years I had an idea to try and write a novel about a person who doesn’t believe making the journey to accepting Jesus as Lord. I mulled over the idea, wondering how a writer might depict the transition in a realistic, believable way.

In the mid-1990s, I was on holiday in New York with friends. We got out the phone book–there was one in each hotel room then–to see if anyone had the same last names as ours. There was one person listed–just one–a few blocks from our hotel. The listing had two initials and a surname, as single women often listed themselves in those days.

We joked about calling to see if she was related and would take us to fun shops and restaurants. We didn’t call, of course, but the idea stuck with me. Cami’s story, the story of a random telephone call forming a lifeline in a time of desperation, grew from that small spark of an idea.

What are the key takeaways readers will get from your book?

“Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins.”

What else would you like readers to know about you and your book?

I would like readers to know that 280 copies of All In have been distributed to women inmates in Texas through a nonprofit called Bookmates4Inmates. Here’s a 5-minute YouTube video about how the first 130 copies happened to go to these women:

Another friend, DeAnne Barber, has given copies of the novel to each of the six women on Death Row in the Mountainview Unit, not far from Waco, Texas.

These incarcerated readers have changed the way I think about who I’m writing to. Whatever novels are in my future, I hope they can be enjoyed by a wide range of readers, and I’d like my stories to supply relief and refreshing from the everyday grind we all experience.

Where can readers get your book?

Go here to purchase all editions on Amazon.

The paperback edition is available at retail bookstores.

An Audible edition is in the works, so watch for that to show up on Amazon or by connecting with me on social media.

What other books have you published?

All In is my first novel, although I’m working on a manuscript for a historical novel.

The Dallas Area Writers Group, where I’m a member, published an anthology titled Texas Shorts: An Anthology of Short Stories Published by Texas Writers (Vol. 1). The book is available at Amazon, and my short story “Big Women” is included.

About L. K. Simonds

L. K. Simonds is a Fort Worth local. She has worked as a waitress, KFC hostess, telephone marketer, assembly-line worker, nanny, hospital lab technician, and air traffic controller. She’s an instrument-rated pilot and an alumna of Christ for the Nations Institute in Dallas.

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