Hello! I’m Savala.

I’m a writer. My book of essays about race, gender, and the body will be published by Simon & Schuster in 2021. I’m also in/on Forbes, NPR, the Nation, BUST, the SF Chronicle, A Practical Wedding, the Equals Record, the Detroit Free Press, and more.

I write about intersections and liminal spaces around bodies, race, gender and modern life. This is my sketchbook. Sometimes I post drafts because reading them “in public” helps me write. And, I should say, I speak only for myself.

Join my mailing list if you’d like to receive fresh writing now and then.

Say hi via hello@savalat.com.

Have a good one,


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Notes on Cellulite

At the track, high school students warm up with lacrosse sticks and soccer cleats. The grass is cropped close to the earth, fresh green nearly gold in the the summer evening. Blue and lavender clouds gather beyond the trees, the sun sighing low in the midwest sky.

The woman in front of you runs. Her nylon shorts flutter. Her ponytail bounces, perky as rollerskating, left and right.

Her thick cellulite shifts beneath middle-age skin, which sags with the laxity of time. Her thighs come up, feet fall, sneakers roll on the soft ochre ground, ankles hold steady, spine reaches high, her legs moving smooth as watch gears. She’s a runner.

The thought is so fast you almost missed it: Jesus, that cellulite in those shorts!

She’s also a wife; her ring catches sunlight as she rounds the bend. Maybe a mom.

You catch the thought–the nastiness, the Pavlovian response–and correct it. Instead of cringing at her soft thighs, you think, “You go girl!” You replace what you’ve been trained to do — shame, shirk, shy away from bodies as they age, evolve, or simply exist — and lean into the sweeter experience of celebrating her. You lift her up.

Trapped Though We Are: A Letter to West Virginia Forebears and their Progeny

The Woods Await