Paulo Coelho – A leap through time (Feature Story – For Journalism Subject)

Paulo Coelho – A leap through time

By: Jovel

“Everything tells me that I’ am about to make a wrong decision, but making mistakes is just part of life. What does the world want of me? Does it want me to take no risk, to go back to where I came from because I didn’t have the courage to say “Yes” to life?”

–          Eleven Minutes

August 24, 1947 – A Brazilian lyricist and novelist of today has been born, 65 years of age he has become one of the most widely read authors and according to Wikipedia he is the recipient of numerous international awards of today’s generation. His name lies in one man, he is Paulo Coelho.

Wikipedia added that Paulo Coelho is known to be the author of the best-selling book in history, The Alchemist. Selling more than 65 million copies and has been translated to 71 different languages thus becoming the winner in the Guinness World Record for Most Translated Book by living author.

Coelho focuses his writing genres to Dramas, Self-Improvement, Psychology and Religion. During his early life, he is raised as a Catholic and attended Jesuit schools. During teenage years he was much firmed with his goal and that is to be a Writer. Learning from this his parents discouraged him by saying that he has no future in it thus he became rebellious making his parents think that he was mad and losing his mentality. He was forced to enter a mental asylum for 3 times.

According to Coelho said that: “It happens with love, all the time when you have this love towards someone else, but you want this person to change, to be like you. And then love can be very destructive.”

When he was released from an institutional care, he enrolled to law school but dropped out because of “sex, drugs and rock ‘n’roll”during the 1970’s hippie lifestyle. His life being a lyricist begun in the 1970’s, writing song lyrics for Brazilian musicians protesting the country’s military rule. He was jailed three times and tortured in prison.

An excerpt from one of his books The Pilgrimage: “There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.” During the time of the year 1986 added that Coelho walked the 500 plus mile road to Santiago de Compostela in Spain. Wherein during these times he was experiencing a spiritual awakening and he described this on his book The Pilgrimage that this has been a turning point in his life.

In 1987, he created his best-selling book “The Alchemist” a story of a Spanish shepherd boy who travelled to Egypt in search of a dream and thus receives his heart’s full desire. also cited that since then the book has been praised by different people from the globe while Wikipedia added that the book was also receive praises from public figures like Will Smith and Jorge Garcia.

Several of his works such as By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept, Aleph, The witch of Portobello, The winner stands alone, The Fifth Mountain, Maktub, The Devil and Miss Prym and The Zahir also receives international recognition by different countries across the globe. His book “Veronika decides to die” became a motion picture in 2009 stared by the actress Buffy: The Vampire Slayer, Sarah Michelle Gellar. And there are new that a production is on the move for his book “Eleven Minutes”.

Coelho is also active in social media sites such as facebook and twitter. He has also runs a blog in which he post blog articles three times a week.

For his personal life, according to Wikipedia he is married to an artist named Chritina Oiticica and they divide their time between Europe and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In 1996, Coelho founded the Paulo Coelho Institute, which provides aid to children and elderly people.


I fell in love with the “The Alchemist”. I remember my friend and classmate in the summer of 2009, Denise, who lend me her book. At first I find the book a bit boring. With every strong and deep passage of words I was yawning with every chapter but I find it amusing on why I keep on reading. I find humour in every paragraphs and it was enough to capture my attention.  The book also made me smile for every noticeable quotes that comes along. Since then I didn’t forget the author of the said book. He became my inspiration on finding what truly my heart desires and what will the universe will do if I chose my heart’s desires. It motivates me to what I’ am becoming now.  So when my professor asked our class to write a feature article/story but focuses on a certain personality or person, it is he I think of.  Paulo Coelho -leaping through time. A man besotted by many people of the globe. Phantasm of Actuality. The story of a man who once dreamed of becoming what I’m dreaming now. A Writer.

– Jovel, August 2013

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