An Evening with Joshua James Amberson, in Conversation with Katie Haegele

Tuesday, September 12th, at 6:30 PM

Please join us on September 12th for a lovely evening with Joshua James Amberson, and Katie Haegele as they discuss Amberson's latest work, Staring Contest: Essays about Eyes


As a child, Joshua James Amberson was diagnosed with pseudoxanthoma elasticum, a rare genetic condition that may eventually lead to sightlessness. “In my own mild way,” his book opens, “I like to obsess,” and what follows is a relentlessly curious series of detours through oft-ignored aspects of vision and vision loss. Deftly weaving together such disparate subjects as Bette Davis’s career, the daily challenges of eye contact, and his own decade-long saga of periodic eye injections, Amberson digs deeply into the physical and existential consequences of living with such uncertainty. Staring Contest is wise, generous, and—given the subject matter—surprisingly funny.


Joshua James Amberson is the author of the young adult novel How to Forget Almost Everything (Korza Books), a series of chapbooks with Two Plum Press, and the long-running Basic Paper Airplane zine series. He lives in Portland, Oregon where he runs the Antiquated Future online variety store and record label.


Katie Haegele is a writer from Philadelphia. She writes personal and critical essays for newspapers and magazines and has published four books of creative nonfiction with the Portland, Oregon based publishing house Microcosm. She is also a longtime zine maker and a great believer in DIY self-publishing. Her most recent self-published book is Spiritbox, a collection of meme-like visual poems that explore the ideas of traumatization, spirituality, and hauntedness. Visit Katie online at

Event date: 
Tuesday, September 12, 2023 - 6:30pm
Event address: 
Head House Books
619 South 2nd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147
Staring Contest: Essays about Eyes By Joshua James Amberson Cover Image
ISBN: 9781960200006
Availability: Special Order
Published: Perfect Day Publishing - May 16th, 2023