I didn't have the kind of experience with Madeleine L'Engle's books that many of her fans recalled today when news of her death broke. I didn't read any of her work until I was an adult, and it didn't do for me what it clearly did for many others.
However, somewhere around nine to twelve years ago, I drove about an hour to hear her speak. I only went because the rest of the family was away for the weekend, and I wanted to do something different and writer-like with my found time. So I saw my chance to go hear a famous writer speak, and I grabbed it. I went by myself, and while sitting alone in a group of strangers, I felt my enthusiasm draining away. I wished I'd done something else with my free Saturday.
Then L'Engle was introduced and began to speak. I can't recall now what she said, just how I felt when I left there. Inspired and excited. I don't know how long that lasted, but it's good to come upon someone who can make you feel that way even if it's only for a while.