The story centers on a family whose members discover, upon turning 13, that they possess supernatural powers that they’ll retain for the rest of their lives, such as making it rain for days or creating furious gusts of wind. When the latest family member is about to hit 13, her life’s turned upside down by a tragic accident.
Q and A with author Ingrid Law
Question: What inspired you to write Savvy?
Answer: When I started Savvy, I wanted to create a different kind of magic—one that called to mind the feel of a modern American tall-tale. I wanted to break away from the traditional tales about magic and find roots in the soil around me. What would magic look like if it sprang up in the small towns of America? And what in the world would it be called if I didn’t want to call that distinctive know-how magic? I enjoyed setting Savvy in our ordinary, everyday world, and filling it with larger-than-life characters who have very normal, human reactions and fears.
Q: Do you have a distinctive talent, trait or "savvy" of your own?
A: With a savvy, there is always the element of the ideal versus the reality-what you dream about versus what you get. If I could pick, my savvy would probably be the ability to fly or to breathe underwater. But if I were to declare what my real, true, everyday savvy is, I think that I would have to say that I smile a lot, even through rough times. And I tend to spill things-usually on my shirt at dinner parties!
Q: What was your family like growing up?
A: Growing up, my family consisted of a mom, a dad, an older sister, a few (dozen) rabbits, numerous hamsters, gerbils, several birds, and a goldfish that lived about twelve centuries in goldfish years. I didn’t have a big family like the Beaumonts, but we did have our own share of unusual attributes, and my sister and I were always encouraged to follow our hearts and explore our talents.
Q: Are any of your characters based on you or your family?
A: I think it might be impossible not to put a tiny bit of oneself into at least a few characters. Like Samson, I prefer solitude. Like Lester, I tend to twitch. Like Lill, I often feel big and small at the same time. And like Mibs, I still struggle to weed out other people’s voices from my head.
Q: Savvy is your first novel. What would you be doing if you weren’t writing?
A: I’d be worrying more! I think that anxiety is simply an active imagination put to the wrong use. I try to redirect all of the ‘What-If’s’ of worrying into the ‘What-If’s’ of storytelling.
Q: Where do you write?
A: I have an overstuffed chair that’s big enough for me to sit in cross-legged and pull a laptop table up to when I write. It’s like a nest. It’s my favorite place in the house.