Interview with Allison Floyd
1) Tell us a little bit about yourself. What made you want to become an author?
A) I was born and raised in New England and knew from a young age i wanted to be an author. As a little girl I would write stories and staple
printer paper together to make “books” that I would illustrate myself. I initially thought I wanted to be an English teacher but then I
realized while I liked analyzing and reading literature, I didn’t think I wanted to spend the rest of my life teaching the same books year
after year. I have been writing creatively my whole life but it wasn’t until I mentioned to my friend I had an idea for a novel but that I
didn’t think there was any point in finishing it that she convinced me I should absolutely go for it. I’m very grateful to her for that.
2) What was the inspiration for A Wider Universe?
A) I was inspired to write A Wider Universe during my senior year of college at Fairfield University. I was taking two classes, a British
Literature Survey, and a class called American Lit and Religion that were both really making me think about the Big Questions. One day in
class I was listening to a discussion on Sir Thomas More’s Utopia and it just clicked with the readings by Ralph Waldo Emerson I had been
doing in my other class. I became fascinated with this idea of paradise being a place where no one was legally permitted to force their
beliefs on others and I thought a great deal about how that isn’t the reality we live in today. That’s how Gene and Patrick came to exist.
3) What message or theme do you hope readers take away from your book?
A) Ideally I hope that readers will connect with or relate to the characters and their journeys of self-discovery and realize that we are
all complex and flawed. I also hope it gets them thinking about the idea of making human connections while respecting people’s differences
but still working to find common ground.
4) If you could have a conversation with any of your characters, who would it be and what would you ask them?
A) I love this question. I think I would most want to have a conversation with Jansson. He’s had a very interesting life, and as a
psychology professor, he’s well versed in human behavior yet he still has a lot of emotions and sensibilities that he doesn’t seem to
understand himself, so I would want to ask him what he thinks about the human condition and whether he feels safer seeing it as purely
academic instead of applying it to his own life.
5) What advice would you give to any aspiring authors out there?
A) If you have an idea or a sudden inspiration strikes you, put it to paper. Whether or not you think it will lead to anything or go
anywhere it’s very important to write it down and tell your story. That way it will be there if you decide it’s a project you want to
come back to. Great ideas are few and far between so don’t let it go to waste because you’re worried it won’t amount to anything.
6) What are your future plans? Any other book’s on the horizon?
A) I have written the beginning of a second novel about a young woman who was adopted who discovers she has a biological sister across the
Atlantic. I don’t know what my plans are for it yet; whether or not I want to shelve it to work on something else or whether I want it to
be my next project. I’ll have to wait and see where my inspiration takes me.