5,4,3,2,1 Interview: Anna Staniszewski

I’m excited to have Anna Staniszewski on my blog today for a 5,4,3,2,1 interview.

If you are new to the format they work like this:

I give the interviewee 5 questions.

They have to answer the questions with a certain number of sentences:

  • 1 question with 5 sentences

  • 1 question with 4 sentences

  • 1 question with 3 sentences

  • 1 question with 2 sentences

  • 1 question with 1 sentence

They get to pick which question to answer with each number of sentences.

The final rule is that they must have fun. If they don’t have fun, they can’t do it (It’s in the rules).

Today, I am honored to interview author Anna Staniszewski about her newest book.

Time for the interview!

1. Can you tell us a little bit about The Dirt Diary?

Rachel Lee didn’t think anything could be worse than her parents splitting up. She was wrong. Working for her mom’s new house-cleaning business puts Rachel in the dirty bathrooms of the most popular kids in the eighth grade. And digging up their secrets. She doesn’t mean to reveal what she’s learned, but when the hottest guy in school pays her to spy on his girlfriend Rachel decides to get her hands dirty.


2. What is your favorite thing about being a writer?

I love taking seemingly random bits of inspiration and seeing them develop into stories. It’s amazing to look at a manuscript that I’ve finished and know that it came out of my brain.

3. What’s the hardest thing about being a writer?

Doubt seems to be a constant in writing. Every sentence that goes on the page comes with doubt. Sometimes it seems like the words will never do exactly what you want them to. On those days, I have to remind myself to “Keep your head down and keep writing” and find a way to make those words behave.

4. If you could spend one day inside the world of any book which book would you pick?

I’d love to visit a world where there’s a tiny bit of magic. Sorcery and Cecelia by Caroline Stevermer and Patricia Wrede is one of my favorite books because it’s like a Jane Austen novel with magic. It would be so much fun to wear pretty dresses and rub elbows with real-life magicians for a day.


5. What advice do you have for the young writers in my classroom?

Keep your head down and keep writing!

Anna Staniszewski


Born in Poland and raised in the United States, Anna Staniszewski grew up loving stories in both Polish and English. She was named the 2006-2007 Writer-in-Residence at the Boston Public Library and a winner of the 2009 PEN New England Susan P. Bloom Discovery Award. When she’s not writing, Anna spends her time teaching, reading, and challenging unicorns to games of hopscotch. She is the author of My Very UnFairy Tale Life series, published by Sourcebooks Jabberwocky. Look for the first book in Anna’s next tween series, The Dirt Diary, in January 2014, and visit her at http://www.annastan.com.


4 thoughts on “5,4,3,2,1 Interview: Anna Staniszewski

  1. Wow, what a fresh premise for a story! I mean, cleaning the bathrooms of the popular kids?! Anna, I’m impressed beyond words. Great interview! And yes…make those words BEHAVE! 😀

    Btw, Colby, I thought I was on the wrong page! New theme is nice. SO bold 🙂


      1. Give it a chance before you decide to keep it or change it up. I guess ’cause you’re a teacher, I tend to think “writing pad,” type stuff, or apples lol Not sure if WordPress has either! 🙂


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