In January 2006, we named Shaker Heights native James Frey, author of the bestselling addiction memoir “A Million Little Pieces,” one of our most interesting people. That same month, the book was exposed as a partial fabrication —so last August, we included Frey in our “Notorious Cleveland” issue. Frey thought it was funny, and he voted for himself online in our Notorious Cleveland Tournament.
Since then, Frey, 38, has been laying low and busily writing. Last year, he penned “Hell’s Angels,” a screenplay “very loosely based” on the life of motorcycle gang leader Sonny Barger, for director Tony Scott and Fox, he says in an e-mail. Now, he’s openly embracing fiction: He’s just finished a novel, “Bright Shiny Morning,” set for release in summer 2008. Frey set the book in Los Angeles, where he lived for eight years. “I love the city,” he writes. “It’s a great, wildly misunderstood place.”
Frey now lives in New York City, and he and two friends from Cleveland have founded the Tribeca Browns Backers, attracting 20 to 35 people to watch each game. “New Yorkers usually think it’s sort of funny,” he writes, “and respect the fact that we stick together and support our hometown.”