The world wants to shove us into what it considers the appropriate pigeonhole. I do not like to be labelled as a “Christian children’s writer” because I fear that this will shove me even further into the pigeonhole which began to be prepared for me when A Wrinkle in Time won the Newbery medal. If I am so labelled, then the implication is that I am to be read only by children, and Christian children at that. Though the chief reason that Wrinkle was rejected for over two years and by thirty-odd publishers was because it is a difficult book for many adults, the decision was made to market it as a children’s book; it won a medal for children’s books. Therefore, I am a children’s writer, and that is all I’m allowed to be.
~Madeline L’Engle, from Walking on Water; Reflections on Faith & Art
Dew — is the Freshet in the Grass —
‘Tis many a tiny Mill
Turns unperceived beneath our feet
And Artisan lies still —
We spy the Forests and the Hills
The Tents to Nature’s Show
Mistake the Outside for the in
And mention what we saw.
Could Commentators on the Sign
Of Nature’s Caravan
Obtain “Admission” as a Child
Some Wednesday Afternoon.
LETTER TO JOSEPH COTTLE
Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Observe the march of Milton—his severe application, his laborious polish, his deep metaphysical researches, his prayers to God before he began his great poem, all that could lift and swell his intellect, became his daily food. I should not think of devoting less than 20 years to an Epic Poem. Ten to collect materials and warm my mind with universal science. I would be a tolerable Mathematician, I would thoroughly know Mechanics, Hydrostatics, Optics, and Astronomy, Botany, Metallurgy, Fossilism, Chemistry, Geology, Anatomy, Medicine—then the mind of man—then the minds of men—in all Travels, Voyages and Histories. So I would spend ten years—the next ﬁve to the com- position of the poem—and the ﬁve last to the correction of it.
So I would write haply not unhearing of that divine and rightly whispering Voice, which speaks to mighty minds of predestinated Garlands, starry and unwithering.
God love you,
S. T. Coleridge