mitch albom

Author to Know: Mitch Albom

Mitch Albom is an award-winning journalist, best-selling author and philanthropist. Albom has written sports books, as well as nine novels. His body of work includes the critically acclaimed memoir Tuesdays with Morrie (1997), along with his fictional novels The Five People You Meet in Heaven (2003) and The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto (2015). The Associated Press Sports Editors named Albom the recipient of the Red Smith Award for lifetime achievement in 2010. His other accolades include his 2013 induction into the National Sports Media Association’s Hall of Fame and 2017 induction into the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame. Tuesdays with Morrie was on the New York Times Bestseller list for four years. It is regarded as the most successful memoir ever published.

Albom was born in Passaic, New Jersey. He is the middle child of Rhoda and Ira Albom’s three children. He attended Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts. In 1979, Albom earned his bachelor’s degree in sociology. Despite his studies, he remained committed to his passion for music. After college, he worked in Europe and America for several years as a performer. It was when he lived in New York in his early 20’s that he pursued journalism as a career. Albom earned a master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. Albom paid for his tuition in part by working as a piano player. Re-encountering his college professor Morrie Schwartz in 1995 changed his career trajectory. Schwartz was dying of ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease. Tuesdays with Morrie came from their weekly visits. Albom then retreated from sports journalism and would become an internationally recognized author.

Albom is noted for his inspirational stories that offer many readers hope and comfort. Albom’s novels’ themes often touch upon the stages of life and what comes next after death. He is the first to acknowledge he does not ever intend to proselytize. On his writing style and approach, Albom told Book Writing Coach Lisa Tener, “[At] this stage in my career, I sort of know how I want to tell a story and the different ways I have at my disposal to tell a story. It’s more about, ‘Which method am I going to choose for this particular story?’”

First-time Albom readers should begin with Tuesdays with Morrie. The story is full of heart and strives to offer peace to those who may find themselves in their own grieving process.