Did you know that Madeleine L’Engle was born today in 1918? She was an author and wrote over 60 books and once said, “I’ve been a writer ever since I could hold a pencil.” Madeleine L’Engle created her first story when she was five years old and started writing a journal when she was eight. When she finished writing A Wrinkle in Time, she tried to publish the book and it was rejected more than 30 times because it was too different. However, she kept on trying and it was finally published, and has been consistently listed as one of the best children’s novels written!
We hope that you work hard at something that is difficult for you today. Remember to think kind thoughts, use kind words, and do kind things. We Love You.
Some of the awards Madeleine L’Engle has received include the Margaret A Edwards Award from the American Library Associate in 1998 for her significant and lasting contribution to young adult literature. In 2004 she was awarded the National Humanities Medal, but could not accept the award in person from President George W. Bush.
A Wrinkle in Time won the prestigious Newberry Award. Some of the reasons it was possibly rejected by publishers include that it dealt with the problem of evil too directly; it could not be easily categorized as a children’s or adult book; it had a female protagonist, but it was a science fiction novel.
Madeleine L’Engle said of her childhood and writing, “Their lives were very full and they didn’t really have time for a child … so I turned to writing to amuse myself.” She was often sent to boarding schools where she earned poor grades, but often because she was reading what she wanted to read and writing her own stories, poems, and journals.
As a child, Madeleine travelled extensively. She was born in New York City, but also lived in the French Alps, Switzerland, Florida, and South Carolina.
Although she always wanted to be a writer, after graduating college, Madeleine L’Engle worked as a theater actress. The more flexible working schedule gave L’Engle the time to write and work on her novels. She also met her husband, Hugh Franklin, while performing in the play The Cherry Orchard.
A crater on Mercury was named after Madeleine L’Engle.
Many of Madeleine L’Engle’s papers, manuscripts, and working documents are maintained at Wheaton College in Illinois.