And then one day I read A Wrinkle in Time, and it was like someone had written a book about me, for me. First, Meg, the heroine, was a girl. Second, she was different, weird. Third, she didn’t have to save the world with her brilliant problem-solving or physical bravery or derring do. She saved the world by loving people.
This book changed my life. And even more, when I read up on the author, Madeleine L’Engle, her personal story spoke to me. I mean, my parents weren’t rich and distant artists, but my sense of isolation in childhood and adolescence was very prominent. When she described the peace of her private writing bubble and talked about how it helped her get through some rough spots, I was inspired to inhabit a similar peace.
Madeleine L’Engle died in 2007, long before I published even a short story, but I credit her work and her personal life as reasons I kept going, kept working, kept hoping that despite all my strong feelings to the contrary, someday someone would want to read fantastical stories penned by a weird little girl.
Hey there, Ms. L’Engle, up among the stars: thank you.