Diana Rodriguez Wallach is the author of Mirror, Mirror, a short-story collection based on the Narcissus myth, that includes Reflecting Emmy, Nara Gazing, and Shattering GiGi (Buzz Books 2013). She is also the author of three award-winning YA novels: Amor and Summer Secrets, Amigas and School Scandals, and Adios to All The Drama (Kensington Books).
In 2011, Diana published a highly regarded essay in Dear Bully: 70 Authors Tell Their Stories (HarperCollins), and in 2013, she will be featured in the anthology Latina Authors and Their Muses (Twilight Times Books). In 2010 Diana was named one of the Top Ten New Latino Authors to Watch by LatinoStories.com, and she placed second in the International Latino Book Awards. She hold a B.S. in Journalism from Boston University, and currently lives in Philadelphia with her husband and daughter.
1. Do you have a favorite place to write?
I live in a new construction development in Center City, Philadelphia, and the community has a shared space with books, TVs, a pool table, etc. It’s usually empty, and quiet, on weekdays, so that’s where I work. Incidentally, I also hosted my daughter’s first birthday party there. So it’s a very versatile “office.”
2. What is the hardest and easiest part of the writing process for you?
My favorite part is editing the first draft. I love the sense of accomplishment when I type “the end,” and I’m always surprised when scenes or chapters are not as bad as I thought they were. My least favorite part of the writing profession is the business end — going on submission, hustling for reviews, negotiating contracts, etc.
3. What five words best sum up your personality?
Creative, Persistent, Impatient, Friendly, and Fun.
4. Other than writing, what else do you love to do?
I’m the mom to a two-year-old, so when I’m not writing, I’m often at playgroups, music classes, story times, or the park. But during those moments when I get to leave the diaper bag at home, I practice yoga, play fantasy football, read YA, and shop in Center City.
5. What are your past, current, and/or next projects?
Prior to my Mirror, Mirror short-story collection, I published three young adult novels: Amor and Summer Secrets, Amigas and School Scandals, and Adios to All the Drama (Kensington Books). The series features a 16-year-old multicultural girl, named Mariana Ruiz, who’s half Polish and half Puerto Rican — just like me. Only she doesn’t feel at all connected to her Puerto Rican roots, so in the first novel when she’s forced to spend the summer on the island, she’s doesn’t react well — that is until she meets her first crush, Alex. Aside from that, I’m currently revising a manuscript I started writing five years ago. It’s my first crack at a YA mystery, and I’m still learning how to properly craft a good mystery/thriller. Thankfully, I have a very generous editor/beta reader who is offering support as I muddle through this learning process. Hopefully, one day I will finish this book and see it in print.
We hope so, too, Diana! Thanks for a great interview! For more information on Diana and to follow her, follow these links: