Beth Raymer

Beth Raymer (born in 1976, in Steubenville, Ohio) is an American writer and journalist. Raymer received an MFA from Columbia University.[1] As a Fulbright fellow, she studied offshore gambling operations in Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Panama.[1] Beth is the author of Lay the Favorite, a memoir of her experiences in the sex industry, amateur boxing and sports-betting. Her journalism has been published in The Atlantic and The New York Times Magazine. She has held writing residencies at the MacDowell Colony.


Raymer's Lay the Favorite, published in 2010,[2] has been described as a "Dickensian picaresque that paints an entertaining view of sports gambling and her own unconventional character,"[3] and [4] "a tragicomic biography."

In 2007, Focus Features and Random House Films acquired the rights to produce a movie adaptation of the book.[5] Stephen Frears directed the movie, also called Lay the Favorite, which premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival.[6] Rebecca Hall plays Beth, starring alongside Bruce Willis, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Vince Vaughn.[7]

Life experiences

Having grown up in West Palm Beach, Florida; Beth received an associate degree from Palm Beach Community College, and worked her way through Florida State University as an "in home stripper" and later managed, and modeled for, adult websites. After being fired from a social work job[8] Raymer moved to Las Vegas at the age of 24 and eventually found work in the world of high-stakes gambling and bookmaking.[9]


  1. 1 2 "Beth Raymer, author: spotlight". Random House. Retrieved December 11, 2010.
  2. Raymer, Beth (June 2010). Lay the Favorite: A Memoir of Gambling. Spiegel & Grau. ISBN 978-0-385-52645-6.
  3. Burke, Jeffrey (June 28, 2010). "Ex-Stripper Crams Sports Betting, Golden Gloves Into Hot Memoir". Bloomberg News. Retrieved December 11, 2010.
  4. Harris, Lynn (July 9, 2010). "Taking a Gamble". New York Times.
  5. "Random House and Focus Features Are Going to Take the Dog". MovieWeb. October 24, 2007. Retrieved December 11, 2010.
  6. Bornfeld, Steve (July 1, 2010). "Author Beth Raymer recounts quirky adventures in sports betting world". Las Vegas Review-Journal. Retrieved December 11, 2010.
  7. "Movie adaptation of Lay The Favorite". Internet Movie Database.
  8. Raymer, Beth (July 7, 2010). "Excerpt from Lay the Favorite by Beth Raymer". Random House. Retrieved November 20, 2011.
  9. Raymer, Beth (March 1, 2010). "Google Books excerpt from Lay the Favorite". Random House. Retrieved November 20, 2011.

External links

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