Magic, Mosaics, and the Alchemical Process of Becoming…

Like turning base metal into gold, that’s what revision is to me.

Susan Gabriel, psychotherapist, and author of Seeking Sara Summers

During my recent interview with Susan Gabriel she honestly stated that when first beginning to write she hated the process of revision.

On thanking her for being so truthful, I said that I had felt the same way.

We both then agreed that we now love the stage of revising that follows writing the rough/1st drafts of stories and novels.

It was at this point that Susan wisely coined the phrase that she experienced the process of revision as one of “…turning base metal into gold.”

…base metal into gold…

The phrase serves as the very definition of alchemy, a word that has Arabic origins.

Revision is truly a magical and mystical time in the art of crafting and refining stories.

And just as we write our stories, tell the tales of our characters so too does the chronicling their lives, the transitions and major events that transform them, our act of writing and polishing these stories refines and transforms us.

Seeking Sara Summers, like other tantalizing and engaging novels chronicles and takes us into the life of a woman undergoing transition.

Sensitive and connected with heart and soul, Susan Gabriel embarked upon the journey of writing Seeking Sara Summers by obeying an inner calling.

A psychotherapist who was quite comfortable in her work and in being known by the work, Susan also was keenly aware of her need to create, to leave a legacy that consisted of her words put on paper and telling a story.

A psychotherapist, myself, I think of this push to write, as a way of extending our practice of psychotherapy beyond the borders of our office–a way of sharing what we have learned from the stories we have heard.

Our stories become vehicles through which we share what we have learned and gained in opening our hearts and souls to clients and they in turn giving to us by taking us into their trust and thus teaching us how to heal as we facilitate them in doing the same.

Our stories, as mental health professionals are not about our clients, but instead speak to the transformation we have undergone in choosing to help others seek and achieve their healing.

Our stories and novels serve as not simply works of art.

Rather they are montages, mosaics, if you will, of the alchemical process under which we have gone as healing practitioners.

They then chronicle and evidence the revision our lives have undergone as a result of our work.

Our writing is a way of giving back what we have been blessed to receive.

It is perhaps how we say,  “Thank you,” to all those who supported us in our work.

What does it mean to be a psychotherapist turned writer?

It is truly an alchemical and mystical process.

One of great joy and enormous gratitude and thanksgiving.

~ by Anjuelle Floyd on June 18, 2010.

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