Originally Posted by Yankeehillbrewer
But just increasing your yeast count doesn't mean you will raise your ABV. You have to have the fermentable sugar in there for the yeast to eat.
Being that you're just getting started, I would stick to this advice rather than trying to play around with too many variables at one time.
To take the above statement a little bit further: if you want a little more alcohol, just keep your present recipe as is and add some additional malt extract to your next batch. .5# to 1.0# of additional extract won't change the flavor of your final beer too much but will give you a little more alcohol. Try it and see what happens. Your yeast will most likely give you the same attenuation % if you keep the same fermentation conditions, but your gravities would look something like OG 1.046 and FG 1.011. Understand though, different styles have different gravity ranges to make them taste like what they're supposed to taste like. If you add TOO MUCH additional extract without adjusting your hopping rates, you'll get your extra alcohol but the beer may have a little more malty character than what you originally started out with.
For me, I tried reading and learning as much as I could when I first started (mid to late '80's), but I learned the most from my mistakes and also from deviating SLIGHTLY from proven recipies to see what I ended up with when "a little more of this" or "a little less of that" was thrown into the recipe.
It all takes time.