Who are you? Where are you from? What are you working on these days?

My name’s John Floyd, I live in Brandon, Mississippi, and I was raised about seventy miles north of here. I’m working, as always, on short mystery stories for magazines and anthologies.

What do you hope to accomplish as a writer?

My only real goal as a writer is to write entertaining stories that readers will enjoy.

Who are some of your influences? How have they influenced your work?

Elmore Leonard, Larry McMurtry, Lawrence Block, Jack Ritchie, Joe Lansdale, Nelson DeMille, Fredric Brown, Stephen King, Richard Matheson, Harlan Coben, to name only a few. They’ve influenced me by making me want to try to tell meaningful, suspenseful stories that stay with you long afterward.

What are some writing tips you’ve received over the years you feel have helped you improve your writing?

(1) Write like a reader, (2) less is sometimes more, (3) write something every day, (4) never give up.

What are you currently reading? How’s it going—recommend, or no?

Later, by Stephen King. Yes—I recommend it.

If you had the chance to see one musician/group live in concert, living or dead, who would it be and at what point in their career would it be?

The Beatles, after they’d been together six or seven years.

What should we look for from you in the near future?

More stories in mystery magazines, and an appearance in September in The Best Mystery Stories of the Year 2021, edited by Otto Penzler and Lee Child.


John M. Floyd’s work has appeared in more than 300 different publications, including Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine, Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, The Strand Magazine, The Saturday Evening Post, and three editions of The Best American Mystery Stories. A former Air Force captain and IBM systems engineer, John is also an Edgar nominee, a four-time Derringer Award winner, and the 2018 recipient of the Edward D. Hoch Memorial Golden Derringer Award for lifetime achievement. His ninth book is scheduled for release in late 2020.