fLiP iT fRiDaY: Diana Dang @ Stop, Drop, and Read!

Today on fLiP iT fRiDaY, we’re chatting with Diana Dang from Stop, Drop, and Read!, @StopDropandRead on Twitter.

Diana Dang @ Stop, Drop, and Read!

Describe a typical day in your life.

That would be a usual weekday then. In the following order, I would: wake up, wash up, go to school, learn and be bored at school, and come home. I would immediately get on the treadmill or go outside to run/walk. After there would be 50 sit-ups and some other exercise moves if I am in the mood for it. I eat dinner, taking my sweet time as I either scan through the daily newspaper (if my parents have not stolen it yet) or watch some TV. This lasts about half an hour to an hour. Then depending on how much homework I have, I would either work on it in my room or bring it out to the computer to finish it up. I would surf the net and blog for the next three hours before going to bed. Reading comes in between school and right before sleepy time.

Yep, my life is full of thrills alright.

Thrills? It sounds to me as though you’re preparing for some sort of war or infestation of every-woman-for-herself apocalypse, what with all that working out. My husband may have the zombie-killing strategy down, but you’ll definitely have the moves. Either way, I can totally picture the movie version of this, complete with Diana Dang theme song and action figure!

What is your favorite YA book and why? Or, which YA book has had the most profound effect on you and why?

Cold Hands, Warm Heart by Jill Wolfson and Hollywood Car Wash by Lori Culwell have the most profound effects on me at the moment. Both are fantastically realistic as they showed the human side of the possible situations you might run into in life. (I am proud of the reviews I wrote for them!)

A few people have mentioned Wolfson’s book. I didn’t realize it was about organ donation and donor families. I’ll check out your reviews!

What are 5 of your favorite things?

In no particular order:

  1. Mangas
  2. books
  3. my blog
  4. Japanese/Korean related things (tangible and non-tangible), and
  5. the idea of the perfect future I will never get. >< !

I like how you said “the idea of” rather than just “the perfect future…” Leaves some room for interpretation and daydreaming. Never say never, and all of that good stuff! 🙂

How long have you been blogging, and how did you get your book blogging start?

I started blogging on the first of August 2008. Actually, I never knew about review blogs until I stumbled upon a few contests and one of which was by The Story Siren (googled like, “young adult book contests”). I had no idea that you were able to get ARCs or review copies. I thought it was a perfect way to start reviewing again because I published a couple of articles for a kids’ newspaper, The Brand New Planet (discontinued) three years before. Since there’s no way I would ever get a job like that again at this age, why not blog online? And that way I would also keep track of what I have read to avoid borrowing the same books again.

Then it’s more than a happy accident that your interview was selected to run this month! Happy August anniversary to Stop, Drop, and Read!

Are you planning any upcoming new features or special content on your book blog and/or is there anything specific you want potential new visitors to know about your blog?

I have a weekly feature called Trailer Tuesday. Each Tuesday I would post up a new book trailer to bring attention to the fabulous books out there, YA fiction or not. (I did not know that Ravenous Reader did the same feature before me so I did not mean to steal in anyway! Sorry Ravenous!). Sometimes I also post TV reviews for the feature Watching on Wednesday. Since I’m not an avid TV person like when I was younger, the post comes around randomly.

Oh yes, in fact I have quite the big news. I don’t announce it often because I want to keep it a surprise even when I am going to tell you now, haha.

This August, I’m having a one week bash for my blog’s first birthday! All participating authors are from the YA fiction world and I reviewed at least one of books in the past. I’m not going to tell you who’s participating but do expect to see a couple of familiar faces if you are an avid YA fiction blogger!

Looks like the celebration has expanded into a much-longer party. Check out Stop, Drop, and Read! for interviews, giveaways, and fun throughout the month of August.

In addition to blogging, what other creative pursuits do you enjoy?

I guess you can say creative writing. The problem is that I can’t write a proper story. I would always have a brief idea in my head and start it off. But unfortunately, I never am able to continue it because I lack the real plot. So I turn to online roleplaying where me and other people would make our own characters and work on some story. It’s almost like a collaborative piece but you’d never know what the other person may be writing in response (unless they tell you). The surprise element is the greatest because it pumps your creative juices.

What do you want to be when you “grow up”?

I am very materialistic, give or take. And no, not the good kind either. So when I grow up, I want the perfect future. The glamour life you see on TV basically. So I want to be a very rich person with the nice car and gorgeous complex. The whole package? I want it. But I fear my desire will not be fulfilled so I’m crossing my fingers to fall in love with a successful guy (and he loves me too so it’s not the one-sided love kind of thing). Haha, is it too much to ask?

Well, at least you’re upfront about it! Readers — any guys out there that can live up to Diana’s strict standards? 😉

What are 3 things you’d like to do or accomplish in your lifetime?

Well, I already gave you a gist of what I want above, haha. But for sure, visit Japan. If I don’t go to Japan for a full blown-out adventure before I die, I swear I will come back to haunt someone until they take me with them there. I want to publish one YA fiction too. I wouldn’t come back to haunt anyone if I didn’t but I would be pissed in heaven/hell/whatnot. And lastly, live a life where I could die happily.

Haunt us?! And here I thought you were a sweet, quiet book blogger. Just goes to show you the importance of that age-old lesson… never judge a book (or a blogger) by its cover!

Tell us something that people who know you in real life would be surprised to learn about you.

Originally, I was going to say nothing. But then I remembered, I always wanted to be a model. It’s a big surprise if I tell any of my friends because I get camera-shy. Yea, a girl who wants to be a model but hates the camera, how does that work out? It’s another thing I want to do before I die, be in a fashion shoot.

The fact that you’re gorgeous smile is appearing live at the top of this blog? Hopefully that’s good practice for what’s to come!

Now, it’s time for Apocalypse Mad Libs!

If I ever had to face bunny-eating aliens I’d want Amanda Ashby on my side, because I know her kingdom of chicken-loving zombies would kick their a$$!

If she wasn’t available, I’d take Mia from the bookZombie Queen of Newsbury High, because because I will make her bait instead as I buy a first-class ticket to Japan before the country gets destroyed.

In any case, if I only had 1 day to live before the end of the world, I’d eat Vietnamese pho and sushi afterwards and then I’d tell everyone, “At least I got to visit Japan so lucky you, I won’t be coming back to haunt anyone.”

Thanks for stopping by fLiP iT fRiDaY, Diana! Everyone… take this as fair warning not to get on Diana’s bad side. In fact, to stay in her good graces, better head over to Stop, Drop and, Read! and follow her on Twitter, too (just to be safe) — @StopDropandRead.

fLiP iT fRiDaY is a weekly feature at SarahOckler.com showcasing the fabulous YA book bloggers and reviewers who share young adult fiction with the world and inspire raves, rants, intelligent discourse, and a whole bunch of book-lovin’ among readers everywhere. If you’d like to be featured on fLiP iT fRiDaY, contact me!

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