Robert Swartwood has recently launched his novelette Through the Guts of a Beggar. There are two versions of the novelette – a free version that contains just the novelette, and a special edition that contains an alternate ending (3,000 words) and two bonus short stories (5,000 words combined) for 99 cents.
“In high school I’d written a horror short story called ‘In the Tall Grass,'” Swartwood says in the novelette’s introduction. “As is the case with almost all of my early work, it evolved through the years and was expanded into a 10,000-word novelette called Through the Guts of a Beggar. It was eventually accepted for the pulpy monster horror anthology Tooth & Claw, edited by J. F. Gonzalez and Garrett Peck. The response to the anthology was greater than the editors had at first anticipated, and so they decided to split the anthology into two volumes. The first was released in 2002, with the idea that the second volume – containing my novelette – would be released the next year.
“Unfortunately, the publisher folded before the second volume could be released. At the time there was talk the second volume might see the light of day elsewhere, but then more years passed and it became clear my novelette was now homeless. And as I was working on other projects and placed the novelette on a back burner, it remained homeless until now that I’m presenting it as a free e-book.”
Description: Josh wakes up one morning to find his ten-year-old brother filling in a grave in the backyard. From there, the day just gets worse.
In addressing the reason for the two versions, Swartwood says he’s curious to see how this publishing experiment plays out. “Obviously readers are more apt to download the free version than the special edition version. But then some of those readers may enjoy the novelette enough to want to read the alternate ending and the two bonus stories. Who knows? As with everything else in publishing, it’s impossible to predict.”
Readers can download the free version at: Through the Guts of a Beggar – Free