Authors: 5 Ways You Can Be Your Own Alchemist

This post is from The Creative Writing, self-publishing, print-on-demand, internet sales and marketing…for your book.  

Alchemy is the science and art of turning what is base into something precious. It means transformation and renewal, death and rebirth. There are many myths, legends and secrets around alchemy and it has been a creative muse for many people throughout the centuries. 

Here are 5 ways you can be your own alchemist for your writing:


  1. Take your darkest and hidden secrets and turn them into nuggets of gold. We all have our dark and dirty memories, but you can turn them into the basis for brilliant writing. It is not about baring your soul, but using what is down there and transforming it. Fictionalise it. Use the lessons to share your wisdom. Your story is original and people want to hear it. You are unique and you can shape that into brilliance.
  2. Edit your work dramatically. Turn your worst writing into something great. Sometimes our writing itself is base and dirty. It needs refining, sometimes drastically. The alchemist used fire to destroy and refine. You may need to be as brutal with your writing to make it into something beautiful.
  3. Transform yourself. Learn, grow and change to develop your self and your writing. “The book you write will change your life” Seth Godin. I truly believe this. The experience of writing a book, whether it is for you alone or for many readers, can transform you into a new person.
  4. Test and refine your methods and works. The alchemists were always looking for new ways to reach The Philosopher’s Stone. To be the one to finally turn lead into gold. They were chemists, scientists always experimenting. You also need to experiment as an author. Learn from failure and continue to move on. Try different techniques and methods. Include new ways of writing as well as book promotion and sales options. This is a lifetime of work, so you have time to make the changes.
  5. Include both spirituality and practicality into your writing. Alchemists have been linked with both the science of chemistry and also esoteric spirituality. Combining both creates a powerful writing career. Authors need to stay in touch with their soul and spirit in order to create and give their energy to the work. But equally, authors need a practical sensibility in order to deal with business, publishing and book promotion. To be entirely focussed on one without the other is useless.