Date of Birth: September 17, 1968
When her mother died at age 45 of cancer, Cheryl Strayed was devastated. Just 22, she started using drugs. Her marriage came to an end. She was estranged from her stepfather and her siblings. At 26, Cheryl wanted to break out of the life she had fallen into and decided to go on a journey of self discovery.
In 1995, she set out alone on a three-month, eleven hundred mile journey along the Pacific Crest Trail, through California, Oregon and Washington State. She kept a detailed journal throughout her hike and in March 2012, it was published under the title Wild by Knopf. On May 30, 2012, Oprah Winfrey announced Wild was the first selection of her Book Club. In July, Wild reached No. 1 on The New York Times Best Seller list.
Strayed's second book, Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on love and life from Dear Sugar, was published by Vintage Books on July 10, 2012, and subsequently also made it on The New York Times Best Seller list.
She also has written a novel, Torch, which was published in 2007 and re-released after the success of Wild. Remarried in 1999 to Brian Lindstrom, Strayed lives in Portland, Oregon with Brian and their two children.
Wild has also been made into a movie of the same name, starring Reese Witherspoon as Cheryl. Reese optioned the rights for the book for her production company, Pacific Standard, months before the memoir was even published. The movie's release date is December 5, 2014.