Fun, Amazing, Etc.

This is the official blog of indie author / adventure writer Andy R. Bunch, author of the fantasy book, "Suffering Rancor." As always, I'll post funny or amazing things I find in my travels or from poking around online. This is a great place to kick back and relax a bit. You may note that I’m not too clean or too dirty. For more information on my book, go to Here are links to first two books and

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Amazon Matchbook and other cool things you should know!

The October 29 article in Gizmag by James Holloway contains some great info on the new amazon feature called Matchbook. The original article can be found here:

Above, a screen shot of one my books offering the new program, and below are links to my two current books enrolled in the program.

The article points out that this program helps folks who want to be able to read their book in either format. In my experience people who like the physical book (tactile readers) reject ebooks and people who love the convenience of ebooks were generally not big readers when physical books were their only option. So at first blush this wouldn't seem like a big value add, but to me the advantage comes if you want to shift your library over. Or if you want to buy physical books as gifts and then read the ebooks yourself.

Either way this seems like a cool feature to me...
"To use the service, Amazon customers can use the Kindle MatchBook page to search their purchase history, dating all the way back to Amazon's launch of its online bookstore in 1995. Though some titles are available for free, others will be priced at US$0.99, $1.99 or $2.99."

Onto another topic: I love shipping container homes. I can't explain, I just do. At one point you could get them surplus and build one cheaper than through other means, but due to popularity those days are gone. Still there's some cool things you can do with them. Here's another gizmag article worth a read.

Finally, I've been preaching decentralized computing, especially with cell phones, for almost two years. I think its coming but I'm fascinated watching it develop. I didn't get a chance to talk about the samsung watch, but here's an interesting development.

The idea is to allow you to upgrade and customize one piece at a time. You might desire a physical keyboard, or external memory, or you might want something stripped down so your battery lasts longer.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Could Junk Food be as Addictive as Drugs?

Interesting story from Dr. Mercola...

  • According to a recent animal study, Oreo cookies are just as addictive as cocaine or morphine, activating more neurons in the brain’s pleasure center than exposure to illicit drugs
  • Most processed foods are actually created to be addictive—whether we’re talking about cookies or pasta sauce—through the masterful use of addictive ingredients like salt, fat, sugar and a wide variety of proprietary flavorings
  • In a shocking twist, the European Union has approved a health claim for fructose, slated to take effect as of 2014
  • Food manufacturers that replace at least 30 percent of the glucose and/or sucrose content in their food with fructose will be allowed to state their product has a positive effect on carbohydrate metabolism and insulin sensitivity
  • While fructose creates a lower glycemic response immediately after eating it, compared to sucrose or glucose, it is grossly misleading to say it’s therefore healthier for you, as this completely ignores its overall metabolic consequences

Try this healthy option...

Monday, October 28, 2013

Update and Bonus: Quick Travel Tips

If you aren't following me on Pinterest you're missing out on some cool things I find for example:

Here's how to find me on Pinterest:

I also have a brand new author page. I'm working out the details on what gets posted where, but the idea is to draw author stuff away from my personal page. I have been trying to use my book page for that, but as my non-fiction work continues to grow I need something other my individual book pages to cover all that's going on. So I have a page for
my writing business:
Suffering Rancor:
On Becoming a Man:
Author Andy Bunch:

So follow my author page! There's less politics and religion. LOL

So there's a ton going on, which keeps me from updating like I want to. The rumored engagement is true. I'll try to post some more details and some picks about Mid-November. Kristin is a very private person so one of the delays in being able to keep this updated is being sensitive to her wishes. As I'm able to shift things around, like my facebook pages, I'm confident I can get back up to speed with communicating with my readers and other authors. Rest assured you are all very important to me, and I will get things back on track soon.

In publishing news! The semi-firm release date for my secret project is November 15th. This will be a non-fiction novella. The story follows a courageous woman as she immigrates from an oppressive middle-eastern family to a family of her own and freedom in the US. It's inspiring and it's been a real pleasure to ghost this story for the author. This is a must read for Christians and for women, and I think it will be very popular.

For those concerned that all this net silence means I'm not working on the sequel to Suffering Rancor, fear not. I've had some great revelations about challenges in the original plot outline and how to break through. This week, I'm drafting the detailed, scene by scene, working outline as I usually would just before NaNoWriMo. I will update this post later today when I get logged into the NaNo site and post a way to find me so you can join me in this years NaNo. I will only be drafting 30K this November though, as at least two BIG things are going to eat ten to twelve days.

I thinks this is pretty good for now. I don't want to overwhelm you. LOL.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Beauty in the Rain

I haven't even gotten a chance to share about this and there's only 5 days left. I'll give you a special heads up too, in just a bit.

The Situation: Beauty in the Rain is the title for a kickstarter project that my friend Rick Randall and I have been kicking around for more than a year now. We both have our BS in business management and have worked for several start-up businesses and charities. The only thing that is going to boost our economy at this point is small business and here's why. Big business runs less efficiently, you have checked out employees, high overhead and a lot of legal exposure. Small business is usually owner operated plus a few employees. They run on a tight budget with motivated workers. They can innovate at a startling rate and flex their business model to handle changes in market. They can virtually die and then rise again from the ashes of their own demise and not run whining to the government for a hand out to do it.

At the same time, getting a job with a big company and riding it for 30 years to retirement isn't an option anymore. Everyone I talk to is aware of this but very few people are doing anything differently because of it. This is a new era. When the cold war ended, the industrial age ended and the information age began. Things that have worked to build wealth, like buying a house, aren't always the smart choice.

The Solution: Individuals need to create knew products and ideas that will bring in income. That income doesn't have to be huge if you are able to run your business in a few hours a week while still keeping a day job. Ideally these businesses would be scaleable to full time if the day job suddenly ends. I'm not necessarily talking about MLMs. I'm talking about an income stream you could put into a more traditional investment or simply use to pay down debt, but which ultimately gives you the power to leave a day job if it goes bad. With a workforce clamoring your job, your employers have started to treat you as an asset they can replace with a cheaper model. You need to not have to rely solely on that one income stream.

The Vision: Rick and I want to build a network of friends who support each other's entrepreneurial ideas. We can lend our ideas and expertise to each other and we can connect each other to more friends for additional know-how. For us, at least in the short run, this looks like a series of publishing ventures, but it could go in any direction. We could partner with one of the 6 building contractors we know to acquire an income property for example. We could partner with one or two of the coders we know and develop an app for android and apple devices. A series of limited partnerships is the future as far as we can tell.

One of the best aspects of all this something I call monetizing a hobby. If you already do something you enjoy well, why not find a market for it. It's a brave new world for people willing to take some small calculated risks with time and money. What about the relationship aspect? That's the best part. It's time we stopped stressing over doing business with friends in America. Many cultures around the world consider it rude to try to sell them something when you DON'T know them. When you shoulder a burden together you get closer to people. If you have a spat, work it out. People are spending longer and longer hours at work. Maybe the answer is to do something you enjoy with people you like and get paid for it OUTSIDE of work.

So back to the project at hand. Rick is an avid hiker and a great photographer. We decided greeting cards would be a possible avenue to monetize his hobbies. Running a kickstarter campaign allows us to raise capitol and take advantage of bulk order pricing by getting sales in advance of purchasing the product. More importantly it's a way to find our market. Do we get more backers for large prints of his photos or for the cards? Who finds these cards interesting? We thought we knew our demographic but it's been a learning curve so kickstarter has paid off informationally already, and hopefully soon in other ways as well.

What makes our cards unique?  We really wanted to do something different both visually and with the message inside. We wanted to make a card that people could give between special occasions to communicate encouragement and companionship. There's too much obligation in relationship these days. If this keeps up mother's will only get appreciated on mother's day, children on birthdays, and husbands and wives will only say, 'I love you' on their anniversary. What about those times when you can't focus on work because an old friend is on your mind? Wouldn't it be great to have a nice card you can post that afternoon with a simple heartfelt message?

Sneak Preview I mentioned. Monday will likely be a bonus gift announced, so be looking to back us Monday.

So we created our first set of cards--Beauty in the Rain. If you haven't done so already, check the kickstarter campaign at the other end of this link. These pictures are awesome.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

I've been putting a lot of research into healthier sweeteners. I agree with most of this article linked below. I also thing at the end of the day, the best plan is to develop less sweet tooth and use real sugar. Here's some good info though.

  • Sugar substitutes can be divided into four general categories: artificial sweetener, sugar alcohols, natural sweeteners, and dietary supplements such as Stevia and Lo Han
  • Artificial sweeteners can actually be far worse for you than sugar and fructose, and scientific evidence backs up that conclusion
  • Furthermore, numerous studies show they increase weight gain and worsen insulin sensitivity to a greater degree than sugar
  • Natural sweeteners such as honey and agave may seem like a healthier choice, but not only are they loaded with fructose, many are also highly processed
  • In moderation, some sugar alcohols can be a better choice than highly refined sugar, fructose or artificial sweeteners. Of the various sugar alcohols, xylitol is one of the best. When it is pure, the potential side effects are minimal
  • Three of the best sugar substitutes are all-natural Stevia from the whole plant, Lo Han Guo, and dextrose (pure glucose). Contrary to fructose, glucose can be used directly by every cell in your body and as such is a far safer sugar alternative

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Fall Home and Garden Show

I had a great weekend selling my books at the Fall Home and Garden Show. It's been awhile since I've had a truly successful one like that. Mostly because I've been trying to write/edit more even if that means marketing less.

We sold 95 books total, so everyone got a chunk of the action. I sold about 8. Our neighbors were great. To the left we had a zipfiz booth, which may be at least partly behind my positive, can-sell, attitude for 4 days with very little sleep. That stuff works!

Across the isle was a nice lady with the worlds best lunch box. If you haven't checked out LunchSense lunch boxes before you've got to do so. They aren't cheap, but I just thought they were cool.

I took Monday to hang with Kristin and recoup from the weekend. Now it's back to work. Today's focus is organizing. It's time to finally do the re-planning that I've been threatening to do for awhile. God arranged for that trip across the country earlier this year and I may get to do another one of those. I'm not sure. They make great exploratory trips for my book tour, but the book tour itself is not going to happen as planned. I've had a number of great developments that make it harder to fit in, plus I didn't get as many books ready to launch as I thought I'd have. I contemplated just scaling it back but I decided that I would rather shove it off until I can do it right. Probably 2015. In the mean time, I will be getting at least one book out between now and Spring. So I'm off to do my replanning, I'll let everyone on here know when I get the new schedule set.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Great Fall Movies- Read the book First!

Courtesy of

Don't forget to come by the Fall Home and Garden Show to visit the NIWA booth and your favorite local authors.

SO many good movies coming out this Fall! What is better than a movie on a cold rainy day?
Here’s a few that I haven’t heard much about but coming very soon.
SERENA based on a novel by Ron Rash Releases October
A pair of passionate newlyweds move to North Carolina to build a timber empire in the late 1920s but their life unravels when they discover they/’re unable to conceive a child.
BAGGAGE CLAIM based on a novel by David Talbert Released 9/27/13
A thirty-five-year-old woman pressured by the marriage traditions of her family embarks on a cross-country journey to find a husband.
A short-order cook with psychic abilities encounters a mysterious newcomer in his small desert town.
Based On: Odd Thomas by Dean Koontz
Release Date: 19 September 2013
Following his assassination, President John F. Kennedy is brought to the Parkland Hospital in Dallas and chaos ensues.
Based On: Reclaiming History: The Assassination of President John F. Kennedy by Vincent Bugliosi
Release Date: 20 September 2013
The seventh son of a seventh son trains to become an exorcist with the help of the local Spook.
Based On: Revenge of the Witch by Joseph Delaney
Release Date: 18 October 2013
Here’s some of the big ones!
PARANOIA –October 4th
A recently hired corporate employee spies on his new boss’ mentor in order to secure his job.
Based On: Paranoia by Joseph Finder
CARRIE- October 18th
Stephen King’s debut novel. The original movie came out in 1976 and is a classic.
Carrie White is a shy outcast at high school and has been sheltered by her deeply religious mother. When Carrie is pushed too far at her senior prom, she unleashes telekinetic terror on the entire town.
ENDER’S GAME- November 1st
Orson Scott Card’s most popular book. With Harrison Ford- I am excited for this one! This series in a quintet. Next books in the series: Speaker for the Dead, Xenocide, Children of the Mind
In the near future, a hostile alien race called the Formics have attacked Earth. If not for the legendary heroics of International Fleet Commander Mazer Rackham, all would have been lost.
Ender Wiggin, a shy but strategically brilliant boy, is recruited to join the elite. Arriving at Battle School, Ender quickly and easily masters increasingly difficult challenges and simulations, distinguishing himself and winning respect amongst his peers. Ender is soon ordained by Graff as the military’s next great hope, resulting in his promotion to Command School. Once there, he’s trained by Mazer Rackham himself to lead his fellow soldiers into an epic battle that will determine the future of Earth and save the human race.
CATCHING FIRE- November 22nd
The 2nd in the Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins
Katnis has returned home after winning the 74th annual Hunger Game competition with fellow tribute Peeta. They must leave their family and friends for a “Victors Tour”. Along the journey Katnis senses a rebellion is simmering. But the Capital with President Snow is still in control and planning the 75th Hunger Games.
The Maze Runner – due out in February 2014
This is the 1st in a young adult dystopian trilogy by James Dashner. The 2nd book is the Scorch Trials and the 3rd book is The Death Cure.
Teenager Thomas wakes up in the Glade, an oasis in the middle of a huge maze. He is surrounded by other boys his age, who like him, have no idea how they got there. The boys try to find a way out of the maze every day, but no one has escaped. Although he has no memory, the maze seems familiar to Thomas.
Divergent- March 2014
Another young adult dystopian trilogy by Veronica Roth The 2nd book Insurgent is out and the final book Allegiant is due out in late October.
It takes place in a future Chicago, and involves factions on fighting teenagers, so it can’t help but draw comparisons with The Hunger Games. There is a lot of hype around this movie, it was a great book!

Friday, October 4, 2013

Creating a Facebook Author Page 102

I found these instructions on and I don't think I can improve on them very much so I cut and pasted a healthy portion. For the directions on how to set up a fan page follow the link above and see steps 1 to 10. For more types on social media marketing follow Emylyn Chand at her social sites and look for more crumbs of brilliance. Emlyn Chand

11. Click on the “Edit Page” button located in the top right corner.
12. Go to “Apps,” it’s located on the left side-bar
13. The first app listed is “Events.” Set up an event called “Please like my author page.” Specify a longer time period like one week or one month for where list the link to your new fan page. Under the description, write something like “Won’t you please like my new author page? It will only take you a second, but it would mean the world to me. Thank you J” You may also want to write in a bit about how to like your page, step-by-step instructions—this may be required if you want your less tech-savvy friends (like your Grandma or Great Uncle Herman) to like you. Invite all of your friends to this event. This is the number one best way to get followers.
14. If you want to include discussion boards on your site, which I highly recommend for an author’s page. Go back to the “Edit Page” screen and return to the “Apps” page. Scroll down to the discussion boards and click “edit settings,” then click “add.” You can also do this to add in other standard apps like notes, videos, events, photos, and links—yes, you have to add all of that manually now, thanks to the new layout.
15. I also highly (HIGHLY) recommend adding “RSS Graffiti” to your Facebook page. I prefer this to the other, more popular “Social RSS,” because it is far more reliable. It will run your RSS feed directly to your Facebook wall. As I’ve said before, Twitter is the best way to find new followers for your blog or website; Facebook is how you’re going to keep them coming back.
16. Another app for your Fan Page that gets my shining endorsement is the aptly named “Fan Appz.” You can use it to set up quizzes, polls, give-aways and much more.
17. Link your Facebook page to your other social networks.  Add a “like me” button to the sidebar of your blog or website. Ask your Twitter family to like your page (bonus tip: if you say something like “I only need X more fans to customize my Facebook author page URL. Please “like” me. I follow back!” you are much more likely to get people to head on over to your page—don’t forget to add a link to your tweet).
18. Once you’ve secured your first 25 fans, you’ll be able to customize your page URL. To do this you need to go to your desired page name, and if it’s available it’ll become yours! Make sure you choose a good name, because you won’t be able to change it once it’s set. Customizing your URL means that your link will look something like this:
19. Add favorite pages. Go to any page you want to add as a favorite to your page. In the left column, you’ll find “add this to my page’s favorites” listed directly after the number of users who like that page. Add the page, and if you’re smart, you’ll post on its wall, saying “hey, I added your page to my page’s favorites. Any chance you’d be willing to return the favor?” Make sure to include your link with your request.
20. If you change your mind and want to delete your page. Go to “Edit Page,” “Permissions and Settings,” and then “Permanently Delete this Page”

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Welcome to October! Writing, Book Sales, and Kickstarter, OH MY!

Well I know I'm not updating 3 times a week like I planned to. I've fallen behind like crazy. I've been more than just busy, I've been actually throwing a lot of time behind "secret" projects that I couldn't talk about. I'm drawing near the end of those and I'm also trying to set aside time to revamp my plan for the book tour next year. It's getting tough to cram everything in, we'll see.

Writing Update:
I'm working on a project I still can't reveal, but it's going well.
I did manage to start re-reading Suffering Rancor so that I can get some details for the outline of Rancor 2.
I'm in the final stages of an editing project which I think the author will publish in October.

Health Update:
I have about half a dozen crazy diet foods that I've tried out but I don't have time to blog them just now.
Both Kristin and I have decided to go back on cycle one of the Virgin diet, probably Nov. 1. Am I a little freaked out about hard core dieting and writing a novel in a month? Naaaayyyyyyeeessss. Oh hell yes.

Events Update:
Big news on the event front. Starting with the Fall Home and Garden Show. NIWA will have a booth there and I shall be at it as much as they'll let me.

Starting today, my kickstarter with Rick Randall goes live. Check it out here--
The goal here is to verify market interest in a new type of greeting card. We'll use the information we learn from this campaign and the money we raise with it, to found a publishing company that will produce more of these unique cards, find more ways to highlight Rick's photography and possible explore more publishing projects.

We'd love any feedback and please share the link on your facebook, twitter, or by emailing it to friends.