View Full Version : TAT Pro Talk with Andrew Friedman-co-author "Breaking Back"

07-19-2007, 06:04 AM
TAT Pro Talk with Andrew Friedman, co-author of James Blake’s book "Breaking Back."


TAT is pleased to invite you to pose questions to Andrew Friedman, the co-author of James Blake’s book "Breaking Back."

We invite our TAT members to post questions for him in this thread.

As always, we will leave this thread open for a few days and then pick the best questions for Andrew Friedman to answer.

This is Mr. Friedman's first foray into the world of tennis. He has written many books in world of cooking with very famous chefs.

A very special thank you to Mr. Friedman for taking time out from his busy schedule to make time for chatting with TAT!

Known throughout the publishing industry for more than a decade as a food writer with the ability to capture the distinct personalities and voices of disparate chefs in cookbooks and related projects, Andrew Friedman has devoted the past two years to expanding beyond the land of measuring cups and cooking times: He collaborated on White House Chef (Wiley, 2007), a memoir with recipes, with former White House toque Walter Scheib, and co-edited, with Kimberly Witherspoon, Don't Try This at Home (Bloomsbury USA, 2005), an anthology of kitchen disaster stories from some of the world's greatest chefs.

He is also extremely proud to have collaborated on
Breaking Back, a personal memoir with the world’s ninth-highest ranked tennis player, James Blake, published by Harper Collins in July 2007. The book recounts Blake's return from severe emotional and physical challenges in 2004 to the top of the tennis world in 2006.

Friedman's writing career began in 1997, when one of the nation's most revered chefs, Alfred Portale,asked him to collaborate on the Gotham Bar and Grill Cookbook. The book was lauded in such publications as Bon Appétit, Gourmet, and The New York Times, and earned the IACP/Julia Child Cookbook Award for Best Chef or Restaurant Cookbook, as well as a James Beard Award nomination for Best General Cookbook,” and is widely considered a classic in the chef cookbook genre.

Long fascinated by food, chef and restaurant culture, and culinary writing, Friedman seized the opportunity presented by the success of the Gotham book,and went on to collaborate with a number of the nation's most celebrated food personalities. He has coauthored two books with Pino Luongo, Simply Tuscan (Broadway Books, 2000) and La Mia Cucina Toscana (Broadway Books, 2003), as well as Pino’s contribution to Don’t Try This at Home, the humorous essay A User's Guide to Opening a Hamptons Restaurant. His relationship with Pino is one of many that spans multiple projects: He has also written three books with Alfred Portale and two with Tom Valenti.

Friedman has written or co-written several other books, and contributed articles to O The Oprah Magazine, Metropolitan Home, and other publications and websites. He has been profiled in The New York Daily News and New York Magazine, and interviewed for articles in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, as well as on NPR's Taste of the Nation, WOR Radio’s Food Talk, Greenstone Media’s The Lisa Birnbach Show, and other radio programs.

Before becoming a full-time writer, Friedman developed film and television projects for producers Steven Haft (Dead Poets Society) and Marcia Nasatir (The Big Chill). He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Columbia University, and is a graduate of the French Culinary Institute’s “La Technique” cooking program. He and his wife Caitlin Connelly Friedman live in New York City. They are the proud parents of twin children, Taylor Sloan Friedman and Declan Robert Friedman, born July 2004.

07-19-2007, 07:04 AM
How did you get involved in the project in the first place?

07-19-2007, 03:53 PM

07-19-2007, 04:41 PM
I'm curious to know Mr. Friedman's feelings about the tennis tour, assuming he's now spent some time around various players, events, etc. There is rumored to be a one situation (Feinstein) where the author reportedly vowed he would never cover tennis again.

07-19-2007, 05:17 PM
How is writing with a Harvard-educated person different than writing with other celebrities?

07-19-2007, 05:39 PM

What impressed you most about James Blake?

07-19-2007, 09:31 PM

07-20-2007, 03:58 AM
Added his biography.

07-20-2007, 04:12 AM
Did you get to follow James around on the tour at all, or were all interviews scheduled for in between tournaments?

07-20-2007, 09:06 AM
How did you meet James and have you all stayed in touch since the book?

07-20-2007, 02:18 PM

07-23-2007, 08:02 PM

07-24-2007, 10:58 AM

Having now written about both top chefs and a top tennis professional, would you say there's similarities between the two when you look at what it takes for both to attain the best results possible?

I'd ask food questions only if this weren't a tennis website :D I'll think of some more stuff asap!

07-24-2007, 12:20 PM

07-25-2007, 06:33 PM
Last call for questions! We'll close this thread on Friday.

07-25-2007, 06:41 PM
How different is James' personality off-court versus on-court, if at all?


07-25-2007, 08:25 PM
This might be a testy question... James hasn't been having as great a year on tour this year as he did last year. Having spent time with him, what do you think he needs to do to bring back the fire he showed in 2006?

Are there any stories that didn't make it into the book that you wished did (that you are also allowed to tell us)?

07-27-2007, 06:53 AM
I will submit questions to him today.