Victory Square began life as an epic idea called Falling Sickness (a play on the fall of Eastern European communism, as well as being an archaic term for epilepsy). The plan was for a 1000-page drama running from 1986 to 1990, divided into three major sections:
1986: The Leaving Part
1989: The Falling Sickness
1990: The Curtain
In between these sections were smaller sections, including one called “Smerdyakov” (1948-1986) that readers of the series will know references the antagonist in The Bridge of Sighs.
I’m still convinced the result could have been quite interesting, but marketing pressures—for example, the fact that bookstores wouldn’t be able to afford to stock such a cost-prohibative book from a still-relatively unknown writer—led to a reevaluation. In addition, when you’re writing a novel a year, how on earth is a 1000-pager going to be birthed?
However, before realizing this, I’d already written about 400 pages of story, some of which, for curiosity’s sake, I’m putting here for your perusal. If you haven’t read Victory Square, don’t worry—that tells an entirely different story than this one, so there’ll be no spoilers.
The links below lead to PDF documents. Enjoy.
The Karpat Z-20B, the design of which plays a crucial, if unlikely, part in the plot of “Falling Sickness”
From “The Leaving Party”
(Chapter 1 — 5 pp)
(Chaps 2, 4, 6, 8 — 50 pp)
From “Smerdyakov” (This excerpt, while building toward a connection to the primary plot of Falling Sickness, actually ties into previous books in the series and may be of most interest to those who know the previous books.)
Smerdyakov history: 1948, 1956, 1967, 1975
(Chaps 31-34 — 39 pp).