A memoir by Serena Williams will be released in 2009 by Grand Central Publishing, which beat out a handful of other publishers bidding for the life story of the number one ranked women's tennis player.
"Serena Williams is one of the world's most remarkable athletes," Grand Central editor Karen Kosztolnyik said Tuesday in a statement. "We've watched her rise to number one despite physical and emotional setbacks, and her hard work and determination have inspired legions of fans young and old. Serena will give her memoir a strong motivational slant."
Financial terms for the book, currently untitled, were not disclosed, although a publishing official with knowledge of the negotiations said bidding reached at least $1.3 million. The official, citing the confidentiality of the negotiations, declined to be identified.
Grand Central Publishing is a division of the Hachette Book Group.
Williams, 26, has won nine Grand Slam titles and, with sister Venus Williams, won a gold medal in women's doubles at the recent Olympics in Beijing.
More than five years after she last held the top ranking, Serena Williams officially regained the distinction after winning the U.S. Open this year for the third time.
It had been even longer since her last Open championship — six years. And though it was her ninth Grand Slam title, it was just her second since capturing the Australian Open in early 2005. Williams beat Jelena Jankovic 6-4, 7-5 in the final and didn’t drop a set the entire tournament. She figures many doubted that she’d ever climb back on top of the tennis world as her ranking plummeted all the way to No. 139.
“Oh, yeah,” she said in an interview with the Associated Press. “I think a lot of people, probably everyone thought (that). I always felt that I can be number one if I really put in the effort.”