Wayne Anderson, Ph.D. is a professor emeritus of Psychology at the University of Missouri-Columbia, and has been writing a travel column and feature articles for many years for the Columbia Daily Tribune. He also has three blogsites listed below, and welcomes your visits.
Wayne Anderson has written The Changing Face of Sex. This book is a telling narrative of the evolution of sexual changes in our lifetime, from the beginnings of our ties to Victorian mores through the sixties up to present day. The changes that Dr. Anderson has witnessed and chronicled are profound, yet he has presented these changes in a wonderfully readable way, dusted with light humor.
Wayne Anderson is a long time writer and has written Christina’s Saga: From Norway to Dakota Territory. This beautifully told story is based on the life of Christina Gunnerson, his grandmother who emigrated to what is now South Dakota in 1880. The story is set both before and after her challenging journey and settlement in the Midwestern Prairies.
A Professor Emeritus of Psychology, University of Missouri-Columbia, Wayne P. Anderson, PhD, has written a weekly travel column for the Columbia Daily Tribune for the past 13 years. With a sparkling and informative wit he shares his delight in exploring the offbeat, upbeat, unexpected and mysterious. Offbeat Travel is now available worldwide, and will be a featured book in August 2011 at the Columbia Public Library for the theme “Travel”.
Testimonials and Reviews:
March 13, 2011:
[Upon presenting his first-ever travel article to the Tribune, Wayne Anderson was met with a breathless question from an editor, duly impressed with his work: “Where have you been?”
Anderson has, in a very real yet wholly other sense, been answering the same question for 13 years, writing a weekly travel column for the Tribune, telling local readers where he’s been and taking them along on trips to locations exotic and enlightening, majestic and mysterious, 500 or 600 words at a time. Speaking to his whereabouts in a new medium, Anderson recently published his first anthology, “Offbeat Travel: Exploring the unexpected and mysterious” (AKA-Publishing), a set of 54 columns which represent his most far-out, way-out journeys.
The book is evocative and explanatory. As Anderson has exhaustively explored the United States and visited 64 countries, “Offbeat Travel” takes readers from the Capuchin Catacombs of Palermo, Italy to Seattle’s underground pathways, a confederate Georgia prison camp to the caves of India, even to the Twilight Zone and back. It features ghost tours, travel tips, dispatches from Civil War - and civil rights-related locales and moving anecdotes about how our journeys can intersect; for example, the tale of how Anderson and his wife learn the fate of historical characters they’ve assumed on a voyage to a Titanic exhibition is somber and suspenseful.
Anderson’s unique ability to capture emotional and historical detail is reflected here and certainly a significant reason for his loyal following of local readers. Many of Anderson’s faithful fans are older and have long since given up on cross-country or continental adventures, he said recently. Thus, he plays an important role in their illumination and exercise of imagination. “What they say to me, when they talk to me, is ‘You do my traveling for me,’” he said.
After writing hundreds of articles for the Tribune, Anderson simply knew the time was right for a book when the right part of his brain activated and decided he was. “That part of my brain said you’ve got to do this,” he noted. “This is right, this is ready.”
The natural effusive, educational tone to Anderson’s work is a function of both his methodical note-taking and eye for interesting places to pause. No matter how fatigued he may be after a long day of sojourning and sightseeing he, without fail, makes detailed entries each night on which he builds later, longer articles. Anderson gives readers an insight into that process in his new book with an entry titled, “Keeping a Travel Journal.” His wife – and often his co-writer – Carla serves as a companion and editor, helping him further process the experiences they have shared.
Anderson identified “Unearthing Palermo,” the first episode in the book, as among his favorite and it truly is one of the most resonant tales therein. Any travelogue that begins, “The upright, fully dressed bodies came as a shock to me … in Palermo the bodies are there in all their decaying glory: 8,000 of them,” certainly qualifies as a memorable one. Going on, Anderson describes how these catacombs, commonly referred to as the “Museum of Death,” house perfectly preserved, eerily lifelike “bodies dressed in their personal best,” appearing to stare at passersby “from sunken eyes embedded in parchment skin.”
“The drying process has left the skin on the faces but has pulled them into horrifying expressions of terror and pain,” he continued. “Many seemed to be screaming – a massive silent scream.” Despite these terrible, terrific images, the piece is more a meditation on life, spirituality and historic practice than an ode to the macabre.
Another piece which really struck me was “Gumshoes and Trick Shoes: Spy Museum Amuses,” an entry inspired by Washington D.C.’s International Spy Museum, a location I desperately wanted to visit but failed to get to during a capital summer several years ago. As Anderson describes the space, the fascinating gadgets and interactive experiences within, he’s essentially doing my traveling for me.
As far as the reflexive journey between the book and other readers is concerned, Anderson has already done the going – he now hopes readers come to the work with a subtle sense of awe, the same he experiences as he reads other travel writers, and a quiet hopefulness, musing on “what a wonderful world we have where there’s all of these things to see and do,” he said. “Offbeat Travel” available via online booksellers like Amazon.com and can be found locally at Barnes and Noble. Want to know more about where Anderson has been? You can access his work on our website, of course, at www.columbiatribune.com and his personal website, www.venturebound.net.]
—Columbia Daily Tribune 3-13-2011
Wayne is working on several more books including The Changing Face of Sex, with interesting information on romance and sexual behavior changes gleaned from his many years of teaching Human Sexuality courses at UMC, Columbia College and other universities.
He is also working on a volume of short nonfiction with the central theme of Native Americans. I’m sure these won’t be the only books Wayne has is store for 2011.
Click here to contact the publisher to purchase a signed copy. of Christina’s Saga: From Norway to Dakota Territory or Offbeat Travel: Exploring the unexpected and mysterious.