Reese Witherspoon handpicked popular novelist Nick Hornby to pen the adapted screenplay. The story follows Cheryl Strayed's 1100-mile solo hike along the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington State. With no experience, the woman succeeded with the long trek, and managed to get her life back together in the process. She was going through the death of her mother and the break-up of her marriage at the time.
About hiring Nick Hornby, Reese Witherspoon had this to say.
"Nick's innate blend of humanity and humor are a perfect match for Cheryl's raw emotional memoir. I look forward to collaborating with both of these talented writers to create a film full of honesty, adventure and self discovery."
Nick Hornby offered these thoughts on the project.
"I loved Cheryl Strayed's memoir. It's moving, funny, painful and brave, and the moment I'd finished it I wanted someone to let me have a go at adapting it, because it was clear to me that it could make a wonderful movie. I'm thrilled to be given the chance; the fact that this chance was given to me by Reese Witherspoon, a great actress who feels exactly the same way about the book as I do, makes this project all the more exciting."
The film will begin shooting next year.