Payne’s “The Wanderess” Makes Headlines in Billboard Magazine

My poetry and my novel “The Wanderess” has made the news in Billboard Magazine :) …The world-famous pop-star, Halsey (a young singer who read and was inspired by “The Wanderess” before she became famous last year) She was inspired to the point that she said to the press that she developed the qualities that made her famous because of my writing). Halsey based her song “Hurricane” (with its Exclusive Premiere promoted here on Billboard Magazine) on my book, “The Wanderess.”

I just read: One of her new songs is currently #1 on the “top 10 songs and albums on the iTunes Store.” Not bad ;)

(Click here for the Billboard page)

halsey-billboard-roman-payne

 

 

 

Wanderess Fans and their Tattoos…

I am thankful for all of the photos I have received from women around the world who tattoo words from my books and poems, or simply inscribe the title of my novel The Wanderess anywhere from their breasts to their dimples of Venus; or on their wrists,  ankles, and toes.

 
A special ‘Thank You’ to this young woman (below) who sent me this testimony of her body’s permanent appreciation of my art. I only hope that she doesn’t grow to hate me before her skin withers from age and dies.

tatoo_wanderess

…In any case, by tattooing my words on your delicate self, I am obliged to love you for your entire life, you realize… to answer all of your letters (though otherwise I almost never answer readers’ letters [simply because I am lazy]). Yet now, I am obliged, you understand, to treat you always with profound kindness, replying with courtesy to every message you send me. For I would never forgive myself if a woman started to hate one of her body parts because she found out just how selfish, idle and monstrous the author of her tattoo is in real life. So for you, My Loves, I will offer my eternal affection, and I will pretend that I am a good person – God forbid you should learn that my soul is dirty and I am only “slightly” better than the Devil.

Yours Forever,

Roman Payne

Morocco, 2016

 

COMMENTS FOR ROMAN PAYNE?  PLEASE FILL OUT THE FORM BELOW:

 

“The Dawning of the Age of The Wanderess” – From “Literature Monthly” Magazine

The Dawning of the Age of the Wanderess: How Modern Culture is Encouraging Young Women to Travel the World Alone and Free

 

“The Wanderess,” Roman Payne’s latest novel, is experiencing a boom in viral activity. The subject of the book resonates with our internet culture, which allows and encourages women to brave the world on their own

 

In the world of literature, it is extremely difficult to find novels with titles like: “The Portrait of an Artist as a Young Woman.” And even if a woman comes of age in a novel, she may be an artist, but never an adventuress. Writers of coming-of-age novels about young adventurous men have a well-worn, established path to follow through the centuries-old genre of the: “Bildungsroman.”  This German word, made popular by writers such as Goethe, refers to a “tale of initiation” where a boy, through worldly experience (usually involving solitary travel), becomes a mature man who is successful in the world.  Female initiation tales in novels are much more rare, and when we do see them, they almost never involve solitary travel.  Up until now, it was a social taboo for a woman to travel alone. Beyond concerns for their safety, there was the general opinion that “women just don’t do that.” Fortunately, times have changed.

“A girl travelling alone” is the subject and setting of Roman Payne’s new novel “The Wanderess” (Aesthete Press, November 2013). Payne coined the term: “wanderess,” which before the novel’s release was unfound in Google. Now, a popular quote from Payne’s novel containing this word is found in Google on over 200,000 webpages. The quote reads:

“She was free in her wildness. She was a wanderess, a drop of free water. She belonged to no man and to no city.”

“This quote especially resonates with young women,” says Payne’s publisher, “They post this quote on their WordPress and Tumblr blogs. Many are even titling their blogs ‘The Wanderess’ now.” The infatuation with this quote is partly due to the jealousy women feel towards men who travel alone. Editor of Salon Magazine, Sarah Hepola, described her jealousy in an article in Salon titled “Every Woman should Travel Alone.” In it, she recounts a scene in a movie that inspired her to travel the world: A dying mother tells her daughter, “I never got to be in the driver’s seat of my own life […] I always did what someone else wanted me to do. I’ve always been someone else’s daughter or mother or wife. I’ve never just been me.” Later, after traveling the world, Hepola wrote that it was “the best thing she had ever done.”

Besides literary and magazine claims supporting this lifestyle, our culture and society as a whole has changed in a way that urges women to go alone on the road… “Women have never experienced the freedom they do today,” says social anthropologist, Sophie Reynolds, “As menopause onset and marriage customs have changed, women are no longer expected to get married and have babies at a young age. And due to workplace globalization, corporations have begun to put high value on world travel in candidates for positions within their firms.” In addition to those points, women have more financial independence than they used to, airplane fares are now cheaper than ever, and safety concerns for woman travelling alone have relaxed because there is more emphasis now on women’s quality of life than before. As Payne argues, “An increase in safety risk is a small price to pay where it concerns depriving women of their right to experience a life that is as beautiful and meaningful as the lives we men experience.”

Critical reception to Payne’s novel has been entirely positive. The average Amazon review gives it five stars, and claims it is his best novel ever. Like any great novel, “The Wanderess” has a great romance.  It begins when the life of the book’s heroine, Saskia (the “wanderess” in the novel) gets tangled up with the life of an adventurer named Saul, whose pursuit of pleasure and fortune is abandoned to help Saskia’s quest for her long-lost friend and her own “fortune.”

The back cover description reads: “The two find themselves on a picaresque path that leads them through Spain, France, Italy and beyond; their adventures weaving them deeper and deeper into a web of jealous passion, intrigue, betrayal, and finally, murder.”

Writer, photographer, and adventurer, Lauren Metzler writes on the subject:

“If I had let the fact that I was a woman keep me from traveling, I would’ve never lived in Thailand for nearly three years or traveled to Australia on my own, backpacked around Europe, wandered Southeast Asia, motorcycled across Italy or trekked across the Great Wall in China! I would have missed out on the most incredible adventures of my life! I believe that everyone can and should travel alone, at least once in their lifetime. Rewards from traveling are such that you will never be the same, and you will never view the world in the same way again.”

Payne receives numerous fan letters everyday from readers, mostly women, who say that “The Wanderess” has been an enormous inspiration in their lives. Many say that they take the book with them on their travels and read and re-read the novel several times, each time they need to refuel their inspiration.

“The Wanderess” is available in many bookstores worldwide, as well as on Amazon in either paperback or Kindle formats. Roman Payne greatly welcomes reader feedback. You can email him directly at roman@wanderess.com.

 

Above: Roman Payne on the bank of the Seine in Paris, December 2013.  Photo credit: Mimi Bildstein Photography.

Above: Roman Payne on the bank of the Seine in Paris, December 2013. Photo credit: Mimi Bildstein Photography.

Article About Roman Payne on “Books World”

Capture_195The Dawning of the Age of the Wanderess: How Modern Culture is Encouraging Young Women to Travel the World Alone and Free

“The Wanderess,” Roman Payne’s latest novel, is experiencing a boom in viral activity. The subject of the book resonates with our internet culture, which allows and encourages women to brave the world on their own

In the world of literature, it is extremely difficult to find novels with titles like: “The Portrait of an Artist as a Young Woman.” And even if a woman comes of age in a novel, she may be an artist, but seldom an adventuress. Writers of coming-of-age novels about young adventurous men have a well-worn, established path to follow through the centuries-old genre of the: “Bildungsroman.” This German word, made popular by writers such as Goethe, refers to a “tale of initiation” where a boy, through worldly experience (usually involving solitary travel), becomes a mature man who is successful in the world. Female initiation tales in novels are much more rare, and when we do see them, they almost never involve solitary travel. Up until now, it was a social taboo for a woman to travel alone. Beyond concerns for their safety, there was the general opinion that “women just don’t do that.” Fortunately, times have changed.

“A girl traveling alone” is the subject and setting of Roman Payne’s new novel “The Wanderess” (Aesthete Press, November 2013). Payne coined the term: “wanderess,” which before the novel’s release was not found in Google or the dictionary. Now, a popular quote from Payne’s novel containing this word is found in Google on over 200,000 webpages. The quote reads:

“She was free in her wildness. She was a wanderess, a drop of free water. She belonged to no man and to no city.” (- Roman Payne, “The Wanderess”)

More:  Click Here to Read the Full Article on Books World

Pour La France !! (“For France!”)

 

Cliquez sur l'image pour l'agrandir.

Cliquez sur l’image pour l’agrandir.

Incipit de la version française du roman Wanderess, (bientôt disponible en France !) http://www.wanderess.com (infos, email : francais@wanderess.com)

 

 

LITERARY-FICTION WRITER REMOVED FROM AMAZON KINDLE STORE FOR NOT ACCEPTING “EROTICA” LABEL

Has Amazon Grown too Powerful? Amazon vs. Roman Payne

Click to Enlarge

Amazon.com: the world’s largest bookstore and literature’s most powerful decision-maker.  They seem to have now assumed the position of the Minister of Cultural and Judge of Public Decency… but is this business powerhouse capable of justice in the domain of Art & Culture?  It appears so, as they have just banished a work of literature from their Kindle Store with the accusation that it is “Erotica”

France-based, American literary-fiction author, Roman Payne, and his publisher, Aesthete Press, have been tried, judged, and convicted in the past few days, (without defense permissible), of publishing a novel of “Erotica.”  The content of the novel, which critics agree is nowhere near erotic, is not the question.  The question is the cover of the book, which displays two identical naked representations (sculptures) of a nude woman.  This cover is hardly racy compared to other books that Amazon categorizes as “Classics,” “Literary-Fiction” or others of a more respected nature.

Amazon’s Kindle team has already condemned his novel, The Wanderess, to the category of “Erotica.” And they refuse to budge.  Up until today, the book was available on Kindle with an Adult-Warning” attached.  Now, the Kindle book is no longer for sale anywhere on Amazon.

Payne who comments, “I have absolutely nothing against Erotica, although it is not my art.  I am a literary-fiction author, pure and simple,” declares that he refuses to be listed on Amazon or anywhere else under the heading “Erotica.”  Amazon responded to this refusal in writing to tell him that he has no choice:  “The  cover image of your book contains mature content, and therefore won’t surface in our general product search,” they wrote, and added that if he couldn’t accept the label of “Erotica,” he would be forced to be removed from Amazon’s Kindle Store. 

            “The damage has already been done,” wrote Payne before today’s removal, “My publisher and I have been refused on multiple occasions, (and I have written proof of this), to have my novel publicized by press agencies on the basis that these agencies ‘will not publicize erotica.’  These missed opportunities have cost me a lot. […] What I expect for the near-future?  I will refuse the label of “Erotica” and my book will be removed from Kindle, and possibly from Amazon USA altogether.”

Just what is acceptable in 2014 to show to citizens of all ages when it comes to art?  Of course there are modern modes of flagrant expression that should be reserved for adults.  But what about the classics?  Marble sculptures of nudes, for example… for one, they are not photographic nudes, but only artistic representations; secondly, they have to be shown to all people in real life (for the very reason that these sculptures are in public gardens, public squares, public museums)?  Why are these same sculptures not allowed on the covers of mainstream books?

Novelist, Roman Payne—who emigrated to France in 1999 and has ever since lived in Paris—had high hopes for The Wanderess (his fifth novel), which he considers “his first great masterpiece.”  The Wanderess is a poetic, literary-fiction love-story about “two lost souls” vagabonding in Europe where they search for a mysterious “fortune” as well as things they’ve lost in this world.  Payne, who before finding success as a novelist worked as a graphic designer, used a marble statue of a nude woman as a model to create an extremely compelling book cover.  The finished cover doesn’t show frontal nudity, and it doesn’t show full backside nudity (the buttocks are concealed and an arm conceals the breasts).

“Amazon’s decision not only surprised me, it blew my mind completely!” said Payne, “I’ve always tried to ignore the puritanical label people put on America.  In France, where I live, nudity showing the naked breasts and backsides of women are used in the posters that advertise health & beauty products on the windows of pharmacies and perfumeries.  And this is real-body nudity—not representations such as sculpture.  Yes, I was and am mystified by Amazon’s reaction.”  A curious coincidence is that Payne and Amazon have a reason to share similar values: they are both from Seattle.

Payne and his publisher are asking for readers opinion of this.  Please log-in to the active discussion at culturalbook.com.  Payne is also happy to provide interviews on the subject.  To request an interview, please email office@aesthetepress.com.

UN AUTEUR DE FICTION LITTERAIRE BANNI DE LA LIBRAIRIE KINDLE D’AMAZON POUR N’AVOIR PAS ACCEPTE D’ÊTRE CLASSIFIE DANS LEUR CATEGORIE “EROTICA”

Has Amazon Grown too Powerful? Amazon vs. Roman PayneAmazon.com: la plus grande librairie du monde, le décideur le plus puissant en matière de littérature. Le géant américain semble à présent avoir également adopté la position de Ministère de la Culture ainsi que le rôle de juge de moralité publique… mais cette “usine à gaz” a-t-elle légitimité quand il s’agit de rendre la justice dans les domaines de l’Art et de la Culture ? Cela apparaît bien comme tel, puisqu’ils viennent de bannir une œuvre littéraire de leur librairie Kindle sous le prétexte qu’elle serait “Erotica”.

L’auteur de fiction littéraire Roman Payne, résidant en France, et sa maison d’édition Aesthete Press, ont étés examinés, jugés puis finalement condamnés au cours des derniers jours, par ailleurs sans pouvoir se défendre, pour avoir publié un roman “érotique”. La teneur du roman, que les critiques s’accordent à dire qu’elle n’a absolument rien d’érotique, n’est pas en remise en question. La question réside en fait dans la couverture du livre, qui met en scène deux reproductions (de sculptures), identiques, d’une femme nue.  Cette couverture est à peine plus osée, si ce n’est moins, que d’autres œuvres pourtant catégorisées dans leurs divisions “Classiques”, “Fiction Littéraire” ou tout autre section d’un genre respectable.

Le personnel de la librairie Kindle d’Amazon avait d’ores et déjà condamné son roman, The Wanderess, à cette catégorie “Erotica”. Et ils refusaient de changer de position.  Un peu plus tôt aujourd’hui, le livre était encore disponible dans la librairie Kindle avec un avertissement quant à son contenu réserve aux adultes. A présent, l’édition Kindle du roman n’est plus en vente sur Amazon, où que ce soit.

Roman Payne commente : “Je n’ai absolument rien contre le genre érotique, seulement ce n’est pas mon Art. Je suis un auteur de fiction littéraire, purement et simplement.” et déclare qu’il refuse d’être listé sur Amazon ou n’importe où ailleurs sous cette bannière. A son refus, à Amazon de répondre par l’argument qu’il n’a pas le choix : “L’image de couverture de votre livre renferme un contenu adulte, et en conséquence n’adhère pas à notre politique générale de recherche de produit,” et d’ajouter que s’il ne pouvait accepter cette catégorie “Erotica”, ils se verront forcés de retirer son titre de la librairie Kindle d’Amazon. 

            “Le mal était déjà fait,” écrivait Payne plus tôt avant que son roman ne soit retiré, “Mon éditeur et moi-même avions déjà été refusés à de multiples occasions (et j’en ai des preuves écrites), d’être assures de la promotion de mon roman par des agences publicitaires au motif que ces dernières ‘ne pratiquent pas la promotion d’œuvres érotiques’. Ces occasions manquées m’ont coûté cher. […] Ce que je prévois dans l’avenir proche ? Je refuserai ce label “Erotica” et mon roman sera retiré de la liste des titres de la librairie Kindle, et tout compte fait, peut-être aussi du site d’Amazon aux USA.

Qu’est-ce qui est « acceptable » ? Que peut-on montrer aux citoyens de tous âges en 2014 quand il s’agit d’art ? Evidemment, il existe des modes d’expression modernes flagrants qui se doivent  d’être réservés aux adultes. Mais quand il s’agit de classiques ? Les sculptures, les nus en marbre par exemple… Certes, ce ne sont pas vraiment de vrais nus, car ils en sont seulement la  représentation.  Mais ces sculptures et la nudité qu’elles représentent sont exposées aux yeux de tous, au quotidien, sans regard d’âge. Elles ornent fièrement les squares de nos jardins publics, de nos places publiques, de nos musées publics… Pourquoi donc ces mêmes sculptures ne sont pas autorisées sur les couvertures de livres destinés au grand public?

Le romancier Roman Payne, auteur d’origine américaine qui a émigré en France en 1999 et qui vit depuis à Paris, fondait de grands espoirs pour The Wanderess (son cinquième roman), qu’il considère comme « son premier grand chef-d’œuvre ». The Wanderess est une œuvre littéraire et poétique relatant l’histoire d’amour de « deux âmes perdues » qui vagabondent à travers l’Europe à la recherche entre autres d’une « mystérieuse fortune », ainsi que les choses qu’ils ont perdu dans ce monde. Payne, avant de trouver le succès en tant que romancier, a travaillé en tant que graphiste. Et pour créer sa couverture de livre, a utilisé comme modèle une statue de marbre d’une femme nue, pour la transformer ensuite en une couverture extrêmement convaincante. La couverture ne montre aucune nudité agressive, explicite, frontale. Elle ne montre pas plus de pleine nudité arrière (les fesses sont camouflées et un bras dissimule les seins).

«La décision d’Amazon, non seulement m’a surprise, mais m’a complètement sidérée! », a déclaré Payne, «J’ai toujours crédité l’Amérique d’une approche progressiste, comme la France, où je vis. En France, la nudité est montrée au quotidien, des seins dévoilés, des fesses sont affichées dans les vitrines des pharmacies et des parfumeries. Et ce sont des images bien réelles! Non des “représentations” de la nudité comme la sculpture. Oui, j’étais, et je suis mystifié par la réaction d’Amazon. » Une curieuse coïncidence est que Payne et Amazon devraient partager les mêmes valeurs : Ils sont tous deux de Seattle.

Payne et son éditeur vous demandent votre opinion, à vous lecteurs, et vous remercient de vous connecter sur culturalbook.com pour une discussion interactive. Roman Payne se fera également un plaisir de vous donner une interview sur le sujet. Pour demander une entrevue, merci d’adresser votre demande par mail à office@aesthetepress.com.