“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

Men Must Live for Pleasure and Beauty

Literary Quote about Manhood

“As I look back on my life, I think of how few rules should be followed. As for men, we must learn bravery and live for Pleasure and for Beauty. More important than those two things should stand only one thing for us… Honor. A man’s honor should be more sacred to him than his life — especially in our age, a time when very few men know what honor is.”

– Roman Payne

Quote for Young Women, from “The Serenade” by Roman Payne

Quote for Young Women, by Roman Payne

“As for you girls, you must risk everything for Freedom, and give everything for Passion, loving everything that your hearts and your bodies love. The only thing higher for a girl and more sacred for a young woman than her freedom and her passion should be her desire to make her life into poetry, surrendering everything she has to create a life as beautiful as the dreams that dance in her imagination.”

– Roman Payne

Cities were always like people, showing their varying personalities to the traveler. Depending on the city and on the traveler, there might begin a mutual love, or dislike, friendship, or enmity. Where one city will rise a certain individual to glory, it will destroy another who is not suited to its personality. Only through travel can we know where we belong or not, where we are loved and where we are rejected.

“Cities were always like people, showing their varying personalities to the traveler. Depending on the city and on the traveler, there might begin a mutual love, or dislike, friendship, or enmity. Where one city will rise a certain individual to glory, it will destroy another who is not suited to its personality. Only through travel can we know where we belong or not, where we are loved and where we are rejected.”       

– Roman Payne

Recollection of Champagne, Feasts, and Summer Nights (Quote from Rooftop Soliloquy)

Roman Payne Quote from Rooftop Soliloquy

“Champagne arrived in flûtes on trays, and we emptied them
with gladness in our hearts… for when feasts are laid
and classical music is played, where champagne is drunk
once the sun has sunk, and the season of summer is alive
in spicy bloom, and beautiful women fill the room,
and are generous with laughter and smiles…
these things fill men’s hearts with joy and remind one
that life’s bounty is not always fleeting
but can be captured, and enjoyed.
It is in writing about this scene that I relive
this night in my soul.”

~ Roman Payne    (Rooftop Soliloquy)

“If Only One Could Leave This Life Slowly” (Roman Payne by Photographer Marta Szczesniak)

Photo Copyright 2014 Marta Szczesniak

roman-payne_marta01“It’s not that we have to quit
this life one day, but it’s how
many things we have to quit
all at once: music, laughter,
the physics of falling leaves,
automobiles, holding hands,
the scent of rain, the concept
of subway trains… if only one
could leave this life slowly!”
Roman Payne,

Literary Quote for Travelers and Wanderers, by Roman Payne

roman-payne_cities-like-people_1

“Cities were always like people, showing their varying personalities to the traveler. Depending on the city and on the traveler, there might begin a mutual love, or dislike, friendship, or enmity. Where one city will rise a certain individual to glory, it will destroy another who is not suited to its personality. Only through travel can we know where we belong or not, where we are loved and where we are rejected.”

Roman Payne, Cities & Countries

“Song of the Artist” (a poem)

roman-payne_wife-of-despair

I will always know the glory of the beautiful and rare,
as they will know security from labour and prayer.
As they will hear the laughter of the children they gave life,
I will know the torments of the song born under knife.
And to their girls, they will give,
while with their sons they’ll share;
where I will bear a song—a son!
The wife of despair.

—Roman Payne

Saul on “Youth” (Quote from The Wanderess)

roman-payne_saul-on-youth
SAUL FROM THE WANDERESS:  “When I was younger,
I would cling to life because life was at the top of the
turning wheel. But like the song of my gypsy-girl, the
great wheel turns over and lands on a minor key. It is
then that you come of age and life means nothing to
you. To live, to die, to overdose, to fall in a coma in
the street… it is all the same. It is only in the peach
innocence of youth that life is at its crest on top of
the wheel. And there being only life, the young cling
to it, they fear death… And they should! …For they
are in life.”

― Roman Payne
(The Wanderess, Chapter XVII)

Audio Reading: “Coming of Spring” – excerpt from “Rooftop Soliloquy,” read by the author

 

Back in 2009 I recorded this excerpt from my novel, new at the time, Rooftop Soliliquy…   On “The Coming of Spring”…

http://www.romanpayne.com/audio/MP3Z_literature-readings/Readings_Rooftop-Soliloquy/MP3_roman-payne_coming-of-spring.mp3

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)

 

 

Wanderess Quote, Version N°12

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

(“The Wanderess” V°12.  Click to Enlarge)

From the novel, The Wanderess, by Roman Payne.

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

(Quote from “The Wanderess” – Chapter XXV)

She was a free bird one minute: queen of the world and laughing. The next minute she would be in tears like a porcelain angel, about to teeter, fall and break. She never cried because she was afraid that something 'would' happen; she would cry because she feared something that could render the world more beautiful, 'would not' happen.... Roman Payne, The Wanderess

“She was a free bird one minute: queen of the world and laughing. The next minute she would be in tears like a porcelain angel, about to teeter, fall and break. She never cried because she was afraid that something ‘would’ happen; she would cry because she feared something that could render the world more beautiful, ‘would not’ happen.”

― Roman Payne, The Wanderess, Chapter XXV

 

 

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.

HAS AMAZON GROWN TOO POWERFUL ? (Roman Payne vs. Amazon)

Today, March 19th, 2014, my book The Wanderess was removed from the Kindle Store on Amazon.  Click and you will find a broken link:  http://www.amazon.com/The-Wanderess-Roman-Payne-ebook/dp/B00H00JQZS

HAs Amazon Grown to Powerful? Amazon vs. Roman Payne

On the Beauty of Women and Champagne… (Literary Quote from Rooftop Soliloquy)

roman-payne_night-with-women-champagne_24

“One of my favorite lyric passages in Rooftop Soliloquy.” – Roman Payne

“Champagne arrived in flûtes on trays, and we emptied them with gladness in our hearts… for when feasts are laid and classical music is played, where champagne is drunk once the sun has sunk and the season of summer is alive in spicy bloom, and beautiful women fill the room, and are generous with laughter and smiles… these things fill men’s hearts with joy and remind one that life’s bounty is not always fleeting but can be captured, and enjoyed. It is in writing about this scene that I relive this night in my soul.”

― Roman Payne, Rooftop Soliloquy

Manon Lescaut vs. The Wanderess …comparison of nudity on book covers

In this image I’ve displayed Four book covers: three of the classic,
Manon Lescaut, that are currently live on
Amazon in the General Search, “Classics”
category. The fourth: The Wanderess, will
be placed in the category called “Erotica.”

manon lescaut versus The Wanderess
…IN RESPONSE TO ALL WHO SAY THAT THE COVER DOESN’T REPRESENT THE STORY:  This in itself is an interesting story.  I started writing the novel in late 2009 and it is the only novel I worked on between 2009 and 2014 (which is to say it is the sole thing that occupied my thoughts during this period).

And the first thing I created – after creating, in my head, a rough outline of the story, which I knew would center around a youngish man and a girl… some masculine heroic type, an adventurer; as for the girl all I knew was she would be what I coined was “a wanderess – the first thing I created was the cover!  That is to say that I’ve carried that same cover around with me all these years “knowing” that this would be the cover of The Wanderess… whatever The Wanderess would be!

 

(Pour diffusion immédiate) LA CENSURE DE L’ART AUX ETATS-UNIS : AMAZON COUPABLE DE BANNIR DES ŒUVRES LITTERAIRES

JPG_FR_press-release-img01

Bienvenue au 21ème  Siècle : Nous tenons pour acquis que ce sont des « temps éclairés », et spécialement par les Américains, qui considèrent leur pays parmi les plus éclairés. Là-bas, c’en est fini de la discrimination raciale en politique, de la prohibition contre les homosexuels, et tout  particulièrement…  de la censure dans les arts et les médias. Vrai ?

Faux …

Alors que les industries américaines du film et de la télévision se réjouissent que leurs réalisateurs bénéficient de plus de liberté artistique dans notre siècle, et peuvent à présent dévoiler des corps nus, le monde de l’art et de la littérature ne peut malheureusement pas se vanter d’une telle liberté « artistique ». Certes, en matière de littérature, les livres qui contiennent des éléments de sexualité « de bon goût » ne sont plus rassemblés en place publique pour y être brûlés. Les livres ne sont plus « physiquement » retirés des étagères. En 2014, les œuvres ne sont pas carbonisées, mais c’est tout comme, elles sont estampillées « électroniquement » par le distributeur le plus puissant du monde de la littérature : le plus grand libraire de la planète, Amazon.

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, célèbre actuellement le lancement réussi de ce qu’il considère comme « son premier grand chef-d’œuvre ». Il s’agit d’un roman intitulé « The Wanderess ».  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 avec Photoshop 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 cachées et un bras dissimule les seins). Malgré la beauté de cette couverture, parce que nudité il y a, le roman est banni de la librairie générale, des moteurs de recherche et des moyens de promotion d’Amazon.com, le géant disant viser un « public généraliste ».

«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 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 natifs de Seattle.

L’éditeur de Payne, et Payne lui-même, ont été envahis par la colère lorsqu’ ils ont découvert que « The Wanderess » avait été transférée sur Amazon de la catégorie « fiction contemporaine » vers la catégorie « Erotica ». Comme, selon eux, le roman ne s’inscrit de nulle manière dans cette catégorie « Erotica », ils ont écrit sur le champ à Amazon afin de voir sa catégorie modifiée.

« Amazon a écrit directement à Payne le lendemain, déclare son éditeur, Aesthete Press, pour lui dire mot pour mot : « l’image de couverture de votre livre contient un contenu “mature”, et ne pourra donc pas apparaître dans notre moteur de recherche ” générale ” ».

Payne a demandé Amazon de préciser dans quelle mesure l’interdiction sera appliquée mais ils ont refusé de préciser.

Mais ce moteur de recherche de produit « généraliste » dans lequel « The Wanderess » n’apparaîtra plus porte la responsabilité de millions de titres vendus dans le monde entier. Le romancier, ainsi que son éditeur, craignent que cette interdiction et la restriction de son exposition va rendre le livre extrêmement difficile à vendre et il sera ardu d’atteindre son public, l’œuvre s’adressant pourtant à une large audience.

Nous vous demandons, vous lecteurs, votre opinion sur ce sujet.  Vous pouvez nous écrire à office@aesthetepress.com pour partager vos pensées, ou vous connecter sur www.culturalbook.com pour une discussion interactive.

CENSORSHIP IN ART: AMAZON GUILTY OF BANNING BOOKS OF LITERATURE

(Press Release)

JPG_press-release-img01Welcome to the 21st Century: We take it for granted that these are “enlightened times.”  And we Americans especially consider our country to be among the most enlightened.  Gone is racial discrimination in politics, prohibition against gays; and especially, censorship in art and the media.  Right?

Wrong…

While the film and televisions industries are joyful that their directors have more artistic freedom in our century where they can show the naked backsides of the human body, the art-world cannot brag of such “artistic” freedom.  True, in literature, books that contain elements of “tasteful” sexuality are no longer amassed into piles in public squares where they are set ablaze.  Books are no longer “physically” taken off of shelves.  Yet in 2014, books are being burned all the same.  They are being banned “electronically” by the world’s most powerful decision-maker in literature: the Earth’s largest bookstore.

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… one, they are not really nudes, but only representations; and two, 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—an American-born author who emigrated to France in 1999 and has ever since lived in Paris—is celebrating the successful release of what he considers “his first great masterpiece.”  It is a  novel called “The Wanderess’: 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).  Despite its beauty, this book cover is the reason his book isn’t going to be allowed by the bookselling powerhouse Amazon.com to reach a large audience through their search engine, nor through other means of Amazon promotion that targets a “general audience.”

“Amazon’s decision not only surprised me, it blew my mind completely!” said Payne, “I’ve always given America as much credit for progressive-thinking as France, where I live.  In France nudity showing the naked breasts and the rear-ends of women are used in the posters that advertise health & beauty products on the windows of grocery stores.  And that 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’s publisher and Payne himself first grew angry when they discovered that The Wanderess had fallen from the “contemporary-fiction” category on Amazon, into the category, “erotica.”  As according to them, the novel nowhere fits into the category “erotica,” they wrote to Amazon to have the category changed.

“Amazon wrote directly to Payne the following day,” said his publisher, Aesthete Press, “to tell him the following—and this is word-for-word: “‘the  cover image of your book contains mature content, and therefore won’t surface in our general product search.’” 

Payne asked Amazon to specify to what extent the ban will be enforced and they declined to specify.

But this “general product search” where The Wanderess is no longer found, is responsible for millions of titles sold worldwide.  The novelist, as well as his publisher, fear that this prohibition of mainstream exposure is going to make it very hard for the book to sell and to gain a large audience.”

We’re asking for readers opinion of this.  Please write to office@aesthetepress.com to share your thoughts, or log-in to the active discussion at culturalbook.com.

Free Download: A Novel About Paris

rooftop solioquy promo poster

Click the Image Above to Download the Novel Free.

 

Rooftop Soliloquy, Payne’s 4th novel, is free to download for the next five days!  Go here and download today for Kindle, iPad, iPhone, Tablet, PC, or another electronic reader: http://www.amazon.com/Rooftop-Soliloquy-Roman-Payne-ebook/dp/B00361EODO

 

 

 

 

“She was free in her wildness…” (Literary Quote)

roman payne literary quote image

ABOVE: Thank you to Jawed Akhtar for sourcing the photograph of this sublime woman of the sea.

BELOW-TOP: Canadian Artist Desere Pressey created her own visual with my quote. 

BELOW-BOTTOM: Pressey’s portfolio on Facebook is inspiring!  I wished I’d had this scene of the girl/woman and child vagabonding in the forest to frame the words of my Wanderess … https://www.facebook.com/DeserePressey.Artist 

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perssey-painting

“In my errant life I roamed…” (literary quote from “The Wanderess”)

Roman Payne Literary Quote Travel

“In my errant life I roamed

To learn the secrets of women and men,

Of gods and dreams.

I’ve known all the countries of our world,

I’ve lived a thousand lives:

Many lives I lived in love,

other lives I squandered.

For in my life I never traveled,

All I did was wander.”

– Roman Payne, from The Wanderess

www.wanderess.com

For those who missed the offer: Free “Wanderess” for iPad, Kindle, Table, or PC

In case you didn’t see my offer a few days back…

 

Today and Tomorrow (March 13th – 14th), you can download a free copy of my latest (and greatest!) novel, The Wanderess — for iPad, Kindle, Tablet, or PC.

 

Simply go to this page on Amazon.con:  http://www.amazon.com/The-Wanderess-Roman-Payne-ebook/dp/B00H00JQZS  and admire the big shiny $0 !

 

If you love the book (or if you love me), share this link with your friends!

 

This will be the LAST free Wanderess offer for a very long time.

 

Yours Faithfully,
Roman

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“ODE TO SPRING” (from “Rooftop Soliloquy”)

Roman Payne Quote Image Ode to Spring

“Did I live the spring I’d sought?

It’s true in joy, I walked along,

took part in dance,

and sang the song.

and never tried to bind an hour

to my borrowed garden bower;

nor did I once entreat

a day to slumber at my feet.

Yet days aren’t lulled by lyric song,

like morning birds they pass along,

o’er crests of trees, to none belong;

o’er crests of trees of drying dew,

their larking flight, my hands, eschew

Thus I’ll say it once and true…

From all that I saw,

and everywhere I wandered,

I learned that time cannot be spent,

It only can be squandered.”

― Roman Payne, Rooftop Soliloquy

www.parisquest.com