Aleph starts the week with three no ones! Thanks Holland, Croatia and Latvia. — Paulo Coelho
Last week we forgot to mention Paulo Coelho’s brilliant new book Aleph. — HarperCollinsUK
HarperCollinsUK “forgot”. This is pathetic. — Paulo Coelho
Thank you for checking the bookstores and showing how pathetic is HarperCollinsUK. I eventually will make this public. — Paulo Coelho
Walk into Waterstone’s and you will usually find Paulo Coelho books on the shelves.
O Oleph released in Brazil August 2010 shot straight to Number One within days of publication.
O Oleph released in Portugal February 2011 shot straight to Number One within days of publication.
Elif released in Istanbul March 2011 shot straight to Number One within days of publication.
The first six contries of release, Aleph shot straight to number one.
Publication of Aleph in English September 2011 has been eagerly awaited.
Paulo Coelho has sold in excess of 130 million books.
At a book signing at Borders in London, 2,000 people turned up.
Paulo Coelho has over 2 million followers on twitter, over 5 million friends on facebook.
It is therefore somewhat perverse that Waterstone’s had no mention of Aleph with their new releases prior to publication. Waterstone’s Guildford somewhat belatedly a couple of days before release had Aleph chalked up on their board of new releases. The pathetic excuses: Paulo Coelho not well known, Paulo Coelho not popular. [see Paulo Coelho unknown author]
Once published, Waterstone’s made up for lost opportunity. Erm, no.
Waterstone’s Lincoln when asked for a copy of Aleph had not heard of it and had to look it up on their system to see if in store. Yes, it was. It was upstairs, someone would bring a copy down. Ten minutes later, no copy had appeared. When the long wait was querried, apparently they did not know where to look. Copies were then spotted on a nearby table. Did they know of the free trip on the Trans-Siberian Railway? No.
Waterstone’s Guildford, to their credit, did have Aleph on display near the door. Nothing in the window.
Waterstone’s Godalming not a single copy could be found in store. Maybe they had had a run on Aleph? No display in store, nothing in the window (or so I thought), nothing where books by Paulo Coelho were shelved. On my way out I spotted a single copy of Aleph hidden behind books by second-rate writers (and that is being generous).
Waterstone’s Alton had no copies of Aleph on display either in the window or in store. Three copies of Aleph were found on the shelves with the other Paulo Coelho books. No attempt had been made to shelve with the cover on display. When asked, zero copies of Aleph had been sold. Apparently people of Alton were too pragmatic and the author was not very well known or popular. Asked of any promotion, yes there was a promotion, £3 off the cover price, no, not aware of free trip on Trans-Siberian railway!
All Waterstone’s have an area where new books are displayed. None had Aleph on display.
The publisher of Aleph has of course done their best, putting Waterstone’s to shame. Erm, no. Not a tweet on twitter from HarperCollinsUK. Apparently they forgot! They forgot to mention that one of their most important authors had a new book out! How pathetic can you get?
HarperCollinsUK forgot! They forgot! But even after they had been reminded by myself and others, including Paulo Coelho, the best HarperCollinsUK could do was point to a pathetic piece by Kindle Post UK where they could not even get the author’s name right. And even then they pointed to the website of Kindle Post UK, not to the article itself. HarperCollins could not even be bothered to cobble together a press release! [see Exclusive Interview with Paulo Coehlo]
Other than word of mouth, how does anyone know an author has a new book out, if the bookshops and publishers make no attempt to promote the book?
In Godalming, I was chatting to a lady in the Parish Church. Paulo Coelho, yes, he is a very famous writer, author of The Alchemist.
Alton Secondhand Books a good selection of Paulo Coelho books. He is very popular.
On the streets of Alton I bumped into an attractive female I had seen earlier in an Italian Coffee shop. Yes, she knew who Paulo Coelho was, he was a famous writer who had written many books. Why do you ask? He has a new book Aleph. Thanks, I will look out for it.
If I was a bookseller and knew there was an international best-seller I would make sure I had plenty in, that it is was on display, and my staff knew about it. Not it seems if you are Waterstone’s.
If I was a publisher and I had an international best-seller, I would make sure all the bookshops knew about it, that they had it on display with plenty of promotional matererial. Not it seems if you are HarperCollinsUK.
Waterstone’s is like a game of pass the parcel. No one wants it and it gets passed around until the music stops. Tim Waterstone sold to W H Smith. W H Smith sold it back to Tim Waterstone. Tim Waterstone sold to HMV. HMV has since sold it on. Waterstone’s has recently been disposing of what they call surplus stores in an attempt to cut their losses. In the meantime, Waterstone’s has decimated independent bookshops.
Guildford used to have several bookshops. All that is now left is Waterstone’s (the former Ottaker’s flagship store) and a small Christian bookshop.
HarperCollinsUK is part of News Corp, the Murdoch Empire.
Paulo Coelho is a Brazilian writer. Aleph was released in UK 1 September 2011. It is due for release in USA 28 September 2011.