Sunday, January 13, 2013

Beth Raymer

From Vivian Chum's interview with Beth Raymer, author of Lay the Favorite: A Memoir of Gambling:

To place a bet, you can either lay the favorite or take the underdog. Of all the gambling phrases out there, why did you choose to title your memoir Lay the Favorite?

There’s something ironic about the title. What it’s saying is bet on the team most likely to win and invest yourself in the outcome that seems most certain. Nobody in the book does that. Also, it has a little to do with how erratic I am in my love life. I get very excited about people and then lose that excitement very quickly. I lay the favorite, except there are lots of favorites.

One of the most striking aspects of this memoir is the way it takes readers from one unstable situation to another. Would you say you crave the unknown?

I think that’s why I just fit in with gamblers. I always wanted to do things on a whim and go on adventures; in high school and college, I never had any friends who would do that with me, so I did a lot of things by myself. In the book, I’m very alone doing things until finally I meet this group of people who not only want to live that lifestyle but have the money to do it and have done it their whole lives. I was always trying to find out what I could learn from their lives–how they did it, how they avoided an office job, what the consequences were, and whether it was worth it.

Everything has to be thrilling. Some degree of thrill has to exist somewhere in my life for me to be content. I think I...[read on]
Learn about Beth Raymer's 6 favorite books.

--Marshal Zeringue