Dixon Place & Einstein Literary Management Present Spine Out: Novelists Read Personal Essays Featuring Samira Ahmed, Helen Ellis, Emmy Laybourne, Kevin Maher, Eric Smith, and Amy Wilson

About This Show

Join host Emmy Laybourne, as she welcomes novelists to reveal stories from their lives at the winter installment of the critically acclaimed literary event SPINE OUT.

About the Artists

Samira Ahmed was born in Bombay, India and grew up in a small Illinois town in a house that smelled like fried onions, cardamom, and potpourri. A graduate of the University of Chicago, she taught high school English, helped create dozens of small high schools, and fought to secure billions of additional dollars to fairly fund public schools. She’s lived in Vermont, Chicago, New York City, and Kauai where she spent a year with her family searching for the perfect mango. Samira’s poetry and essays have appeared in Jaggery Lit, the Fem, Entropy, and Claudius Speaks.  Look for Samira’s debut novel, Swimming Lessons (Soho Teen) in January 2018.

Helen Ellis is the acclaimed author of American Housewife and Eating the Cheshire Cat. Raised in Alabama, she lives with her husband in New York City. She is a poker player who competes on the national tournament circuit, and she’s one of the funniest people you’ll ever meet.  

Emmy Laybourne (host of Spine Out) is a novelist, screenwriter and former character actress. She is the author of the Monument 14 trilogy (“Frighteningly real… riveting” – NYT Book Review, Editor’s Choice) and the novel Sweet (“A gripping action-adventure survival story” – VOYA, rated Perfect Ten). Before her life as an author, Emmy performed original comedy on Comedy Central, MTV and VH1; and acted in the movies Superstar, The In-Laws and Nancy Drew, among others.

Kevin Maher is an Emmy-nominated writer-producer, his short films have been screened everywhere from MOMA to Troma. He hosts the long-running live show “Kevin Geeks Out”, a video variety show dedicated to exploring specific themes and subgenres in pop culture. For details about upcoming shows, visit KevinGeeksOut.com

Eric Smith is an author, blogger, and literary agent at PS Literary. He writes, reads, and lives in Richmond with his beautiful wife, a snuggly pet chinchilla, a bunny rabbit that thinks it’s a person, and an overly excited corgi. He is the author of The Geek’s Guide to Dating (Quirk Books, 2013) and the YA novels Inked (2015) and its sequel Branded, which will be released this month from Bloomsbury Spark. He regularly writes about YA for Book Riot, Barnes & Noble’s Teen Blog, and Paste Magazine. His next project is an adoption themed short story collection Welcome Home featuring a number of authors, including CJ Redwine, Mindy McGinnis, and William Ritter.

Amy Wilson began working as an actor on Broadway, off-Broadway, on television and in film, and then she started writing solo parts and sketches, mostly to write herself better roles. Once she fell in love with the written word though, the sky became the limit. She’s now written essays, screenplays, television pilots, and an absurd number of blog posts, along with her book When Did I Get Like This? (William Morrow, 2010). She co-hosts the podcast “What Fresh Hell: Laughing in the Face of Motherhood,” and she’s currently hard at work on a novel.


Thursday, January 19 at 7:30pm

General Admission
$15 in advance
$20 at the door

Students & Seniors

Estimated Runtime
75 minutes

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Photo credit
Emmy Laybourne