Brazilian writer Paulo Coelho has decided to delete a draft children's book he wrote with Kobe Bryant.
The 72-year-old author of The Alchemist told The Associated Press Monday that he and Bryant started discussing the project in 2016 to encourage underprivileged children to overcome sporting difficulties when Bryant broke away from his 20s Retired NBA career.
You first wrote pen on paper a few months ago.
On Sunday, hours after Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna, and seven others were tragically killed in a helicopter crash, Coelho tweeted that he would not continue the project.
"You were more than a great player, dear Kobe Bryant" the best-selling author wrote, "I learned a lot by interacting with you. If you delete the draft now, this book has lost its reason. "
Hundreds commented on the post and urged Coelho to maintain the course and publish the book as a tribute.
But Coelho said he couldn't do it.
"I deleted the draft because it made no sense to publish it," Coelho said over the phone from his home in Geneva. "It would not add anything that would be relevant to him or his family.
"It doesn't stop me from writing about things I learned from Kobe one day and how much he was a larger than life person," he added. "But the children's book no longer made sense."
The project was very easy, said Coelho. He shared a screenshot of a message Bryant sent him in August after the two had been out of communication for months.
"Let's do it right [sic] the book together, ”wrote the basketball star before writing the correct spelling of“ writing ”.
"It went from there. We gradually went ahead, ”said Coelho.
The author did not tell how much of the book had already been completed or whether it had a title.
"Kobe has always been keen to write a book that is a positive example for children, especially those who have humble beginnings," said Coelho.
Bryant was a fan of Coelho and had recommended "The Alchemist" – which he called his favorite book – to both his former teammate Kyrie Irving and Rob Pelinka, his former agent, who now heads the Lakers basketball operations.
In 2018 Bryants Granity Studios published novels for middle school and young adults as well as the autobiography of the player "The Mamba Mentality: How I Play".
"I've seen him often enough to ensure that he has a lot more to do than just sport. It wasn't just about competition," Coelho recalled Bryant. “His tragic death has already shown how important he was to the world, not just to the United States. We will discuss his legacy for many years, far beyond sport. "
With post wires