The House Under The Hill by Merik Katuryan
Known more for his short stories, Merik has been writing this book for ages. At the last count, he'd managed 11 chapters adding up to about 60,000 words and he reckoned he was about half way.
What's it all about? Paul Covington has an uncle, who is a bit of a family joke because he has a keen interest in magic. Covington stops laughing when he discovers that Peter Eversley is into the real thing. Uncle Pete has a heart condition and he teaches Covington a spell to unlock the door between their semi-detached houses in the event of an emergency.
Covington inherits his uncle's collection of books on magic and he decides to pursue his studies in Paris, where no one knows him and he will be able to experiment without the family dropping in on him. His reading has told him that there is a certain amount of hidden danger in using some of the 'spells' in his books. He soon finds that he can make a lot of money on the cabaret circuit doing a magic act - dressing up the real thing as illusions.
He acquires an American wife, who acts as his assistant and a performer in her own right, and Debbie decides that they should buy the house under the hill. At this point, Mary Kay, an acquaintance from Covington's past, suggests other money-making possibilities based on his reputation as a stage magician.
Mary Kay thinks it would be a good idea to found a secret society, which possesses certain magical 'truths', not knowing that Covington has no need for bogus 'truths'. When Mary Kay gets going, things get dangerous.
View TBG jacket & Blurb
Too Boldly Gone (2002)
This work began as a short story inspired by an episode of Startrek Voyager. In Thirty Days, the ship comes across a unique civilization, which is facing destruction because its leaders refuse to abandon their technology, which is destroying their habitat, in favour of safe alternatives offered by Voyager.
Captain Quack chooses not to get involved. She then proceeds to bust a gut to frustrate the efforts of Tom Paris, who tries to help out and ends up busted down to ensign and slung in the brig for 30 days' solitary confinement.
The author decided to do a better, and more realistic, job of dealing with the issue of 'good men chosing not to stand idly by'. His story grew as he added context to the central theme and, eventually, he did a word count and found that he had reached short-novel length. Which is why the work has been moved here from the short stories section.