‘Alchemists Everywhere!’ A HogsHead PubCast

Part 1 of the conversation I had with Travis Prinzi about literary alchemy is up at The Hog’s Head. Mr. Prinzi, author of Harry Potter and Imagination, and I have been talking publicly and privately for years about alchemical symbolism in Ms. Rowling’s fiction but this PubCast exchange centers on the remarkable explosion of excellent work — and also the most popular series of novels in print today — all of which feature traditional alchemical story scaffolding: not only Harry Potter, but Twilight and The Hunger Games as well. We try to explain why this is happening and why the alchemical formulae work across widely divergent genres, auctorial focus, and themes as well as they do. Tune in!


  1. Dallas Carter says

    Phenomenal discussion! Looking forward to the rest of it!

    Learning what literary alchemy looks like has made my ‘intellect of the heart’ more attentive to its presence everywhere πŸ™‚

    It reminds me of when I bought first vehicle after I graduated from college. . .
    I went to the dealership looking for a truck. It had to be ‘unique’ i.e. It had to be a color that ‘NO ONE ELSE’ had. So I found a beautiful ash-gray truck which I was SURE no one else had. . . Well, on the way home, I saw at least 7 other folks on the road with the SAME COLOR TRUCK πŸ™‚

    Obviously its not that everyone went out and bought the same color truck that day. More simply I was ‘unaware’ of that color truck being so prominent because I wasn’t ‘looking’ correctly until after I bought my truck πŸ™‚

    So I wonder Mr. Granger (and the rest of the contributors here πŸ˜‰ ) – – – Is it that more writers are using the alchemical scaffolding in their stories or are we now just becoming more attentive to its presence in ‘good writing’ because we are now ‘aware’ of what it looks like?

  2. I think we’re seeing a Renaissance of literary alchemy due to the Harry Potter success — and more literate writers being more innovative with this restored story formula, after Ms. Rowling’s example.

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