The Brazilian author Paulo Coelho is considered one of the most influential authors of our times. His books have sold more than 320 million copies worldwide, have been released in 170 countries and been translated into 83 languages.
Born in Rio de Janeiro in 1947, he soon discovered his vocation for writing. He worked as a director, theater actor, songwriter and journalist. His collaboration with Brazilian composer and singer Raul Seixas gave some of the greatest classic rock songs in Brazil. In 1986, a special meeting led him to make the pilgrimage to Saint James Compostela (in Spain). The Road to Santiago was not only a common pilgrimage but a turning point in his existence. A year later, he wrote The Pilgrimage, an autobiographical novel that is considered the beginning of his career.
In the following year, Coelho published The Alchemist. Slow initial sales convinced his first publisher to drop the novel, but it went on to become an international bestselling phenomenon, remaining on the New York Times bestseller list for over 427 consecutive weeks.
Other titles include Brida (1990), The Valkyries (1992), By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept (1994), The Fifth Mountain (1996), Manual of a Warrior of Light (1997), Veronika Decides to Die (1998), The Devil and Miss Prym (2000), Eleven Minutes (2003), The Zahir (2005), Like the Flowing River (2006), The Witch of Portobello (2006), The Winner Stands Alone (2008), Aleph (2010), Manuscript found in Accra (2012), Adultery (2014), and Hippie (2018).
He has received numerous prestigious international awards including the Hans Christian Andersen Award, the Grinzane Cavour Book Award and the Chevalier de l’Ordre National de la Légion d’Honneur, to name a few. He has been a member of the Academy of Letters of Brazil since 2002 and a Messenger of Peace by the United Nations since 2007. In 2003 he received the Guinness World Record for most translations of a single title (The Alchemist) signed by the author in one sitting and several years after, in 2009, he received a new Guinness World Record for the most translated author for the same book (The Alchemist).
The man behind the author likes to write and practices Kyudo – a meditative kind of archery. He loves reading, walking, football and computers. In that sense, he has always maintained close contact with his readers but now, and thanks to the new media, he has established an incredible feedback with them. Paulo was the second most influential celebrity on Twitter in 2010 according to Forbes and he is the writer with the highest number of followers on social media.
Paulo Coelho and Christina Oiticica Foundation, with its seat in Geneva, Switzerland, was established as a not-for-profit foundation in 2014. In 2018, the Foundation merged with the Paulo Coelho and Christina Oiticica Charitable Foundation.