Fire in the Crucible by John Briggs

Understanding the Process  of Creative Genius

What Is The Alchemy of Creative Genius?

What makes geniuses  different from the rest of us? What is the difference between prodigy and genius?  Are geniuses  born or made? What is creative vision and where does  it come from? What  are the secrets of talent? And why do great creators seem to have so many oppositions in their personalities and thinking?

In this mind-expanding investigation of creativity, Professor Briggs  reveals that there is no special trait  of genius. Geniuses are not  necessarily smarter or more talented than other people,  but they give their attention to  subtle  nuances, contradictory feelings, and perceptions that  others  experience  and ignore. By focusing on sensory nuances, geniuses create themselves as they create their work.

Fire in the Crucible offers a compelling exploration of the roots of creativity and genius. Drawing on the lives and work of extraordinary scientists, artists, writers, composers, and inventors, Briggs shows how creative individuals exploit doubt and uncertainty, and the mental strategies and tactics they employ when they work.

“In asking about creativity,” he writes, “we are really asking about what is best, what is deepest in life.” Fire in the Crucible draws the reader into an eye-opening journey through the inner workings of some of the greatest creative minds of all times — and allows us to more deeply understand the nature of the creativity in our own lives and work.


“An exuberant voyage through the brains and minds of creative individuals, chock-full of intriguing scientific discoveries and puzzling paradoxes.”

— Howard Gardner, Harvard University, author of Multiple Intelligences


“Brings us closer to the elusive nature  of genius.”

Publishers Weekly