How much of yourself did you put into your characters?
So given the heavy topics in the book, I have been asked if they reflect my reality. I want to assure people that I’ve seen my fair share of darkness and pain, but did not experience the same things Delilah did. That being said, I definitely have to have two fortune cookies every time I get takeout. It’s a requirement for me. I gave her that. And I also shower with the lights off a lot, just not for the same reasons she does. The first date they go on….the really fun one with guns….(trying not to give too much away here)….I’ve gone on that date with a guy in real life. There are pieces of me and my life all over that book.
Who is your favorite character from For Now?
Delilah, of course! Once I started writing her, I really connected with her. I get her. I get her damage. I wanted to restore her faith.
How long did it take you to write this novel?
Two years. Trust me, not for lack of inspiration. But lack of time. The past two years have been rough. I work full time and have two children of my own. I also have legal guardianship of my niece. My mother died. We moved. There was so much happening all the time, even when I did have a moment of free time, I was so exhausted. There were months that went by that I didn’t write a single word. You’ll be happy to know, that probably won’t happen again.
Do you have any quirky writing habits?
I don’t think so. I think I’m pretty normal, actually. I write in a Word doc on my laptop. Sometimes I play music, sometimes I don’t. I will say with this though…I’ve only read through For Now one time. I haven’t even read through the finished product. I read as I wrote of course. Then, I read through and edited and added some chunks before sending it to my editor. When she sent it back, I only read the necessary parts to look at and make changes. I didn’t read it after the proofreader sent it back. I still have not read it. I’m terrified I will hate it and start picking it apart. *nervous cry laughter*
You mentioned Tarryn Fisher’s Write or Die in your acknowledgments. How did the retreat motivate or inspire you as an author?
So like I said, it took me two years to finish this thing. So when I sent to the retreat back in September, I was sitting on a basically 80% complete manuscript and seriously lacked motivation at that point to keep going. It was like pulling my own teeth out to do it. I went there are had the chance to talk with and listen to a lot of people I admire speak. Rachel Hollis was the keynote speaker and everything she said was fire. I felt myself sitting there getting so pumped. She said “You just have to finish one. Just one manuscript to prove to yourself you can do it.” and I really took that to heart. After that, I was determined to finish.
What would you tell those who haven’t picked up a Kat Savage work to encourage them to read your writing?
Oh wow. Um, I honestly don’t usually recommend my work to people. I recommend other work. Ha! I’m so bad at self-promotion. But I would say this: If you are hurting, if you just want to know there’s someone else out there as fucked up as you are, as damaged as you are, really all you need to do is read the first section of “This is How I Die”. It’s comprised of my chapbook “Mad Woman” and has some of the craziest things I’ve written in there. It’s dark and ugly and my favorite thing.
What does writing mean to you?
It used to be therapy for me. That’s how it started really. My sister was murdered four years ago and I didn’t want to go to therapy (personal choice, I completely support and promote therapy to anyone who needs it) and that’s mostly because I was worried they would try to medicate me. I don’t respond well to that. So I started writing. Mostly to get my mind off of it. I didn’t even write about her at first. I wrote about literally anything else. Then it became something I wanted to do more and more. And then it became something I needed to do. It turns out, I’m pretty good at it I guess. Which is great, because I absolutely hate my day job. Here’s to hoping I might not need one someday.
Who is your favorite author?
I hate this question. LOL. Yes, I LOL’d in an interview. I seriously don’t think I can choose just one. I’m going to do some name dropping for some people who deserve it though. I obviously love Tarryn Fisher and Colleen Hoover. They’re inspiring for so many reasons. If I go classic, I really love Bukowski in all its cliché glory. I love Plath, Fitzgerald, and half a dozen others. My friend Jen Rogue is a huge motivation and inspiration to me. She puts so much into what she writes. Christina Hart is a writer and also happens to be my brilliant editor. She has so much great work out there including a hilarious punk vampire romance novel. Alicia Cook is more than just a writer. She’s an empire. She advocates for addiction and speaks at events and does so much more than just write. I think you’ll find the writers I admire most aren’t even really for their writing. I admire them for the people they are in general. It motivates me to be a better person all around.
What is your favorite book?
Every time I’m asked this question, the book “My French Whore” by Gene Wilder pops into my head. It’s a fantastic little read. I have also always loved The Great Gatsby. Mud Vein by Tarryn Fisher messed me up for a while.
What under-the-radar book would you recommend to our readers?
If you have not read the previously mentioned vampire novel by Christina Hart, it’s called “Fresh Skin” and it’s just really a delightful little fast-paced read. I chuckled so many times.
NON-BOOK RELATED QUESTIONS:
Your favorite food?
Who only has one favorite food?! Is that really even possible? I love Chinese and Hibachi. Love love love Sushi. Love Bacon Cheeseburgers. If you add onion to anything, I will probably eat it. Or bacon. I love fruit. All the Boba smoothies in the world. Anything caramel. And I drink the orange Monster energy drink way too much.
Favorite thing to do, besides writing or reading?
Hands down, spend time with my kids and my lover. (I call him “lover” because “boyfriend” at my age just sounds weird.) I also love making art. That’s what I did for so long before I discovered my passion for writing.
If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you choose?
I really want to see Italy. I have been obsessed with visiting there since I was a kid. I think of the rich art and architecture.
Where is your favorite place?
I honestly don’t think I have one. Not a specific geometric location. I don’t think I’ve been enough places to have a favorite. I really loved visiting Seattle. That place is pretty magical.
Do you have any advice you’d like to share with women?
Warsan Shire has a poem called “For Women Who Are Difficult To Love”. Please listen to it. And then please, please do not be afraid to be a woman who is difficult to love. Be vehement. Be passionate about what you want and know the difference between sacrifice and compromise. Have boundaries. Enforce them. Own the things you are ashamed of. Take them back. Make them your own. If you own them, they can’t hurt you. There is not a “woman mold”. We don’t fit in a box. If someone tries to put you in a box, claw your way out. Be wild.