A friend of mine read about my plight and gave me a list of ideas for villians. When I read each one I'm like, "Of course! A government agency tries to regulate magic! Or the mob wants to control magic for themselves! Or a crazy religious sect thinks magic is a tool of evil! Brilliant!" Why can't I do that?
Heh. "Brilliant" reminds me of those Guiness commercials with the old-fashioned english-accented animated men who shout "Brilliant!" at each other's ideas. I get such a kick out of those.
Right now I'm reading a book by Jim Butcher called "Storm Front". It's about a work-for-hire wizard in modern-day Chicago. There's six books in the series, but this is the first one. It's a whodunit with the magic twist. Actually, I think I would consider the protagonist (Harry Dresden) to be more of a warlock, but that may be splitting hairs. I'm into the book so far, and if it doesn't end lame, I'll read the next few in the series. The same author also has a high fantasy series which might be worthwhile to check out.