Albom's breakthrough book came about after viewing Morrie Schwartz's interview with Ted Koppel on ABC News Nightline in 1995, in which Schwartz, a sociology professor, spoke about living and dying with a terminal disease, ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig's disease). Albom, who had been close with Schwartz during his college years at Brandeis, reconnected with his former professor, visiting him in suburban Boston and eventually coming every Tuesday for discussions about life and death. he initial printing was 20,000 copies. Word of mouth grew the book sales slowly, and a brief appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show nudged the book onto the New York Times bestseller's list in October 1997. It steadily climbed, reaching the No. 1 position six months later. It remained on the New York Times bestseller list for 205 weeks. Now the bestselling memoir of all time, Tuesdays With Morrie has sold over 14 million copies and has been translated into 41 languages.