If you are misremembering a few details, you may be partially remembering the first book of Zelazny's Chronicles of Amber series. The first book is 'Nine Princes in Amber' (1970).
The 'Childhood Friend' would be his brother, Random
They set off in a car to get to Amber, the one, true world (well, as of what we know at that time in the series) that casts ...
There are at least five. (and an unnamed one)
First appeared in Animal Man #23 (1990), as an illusion of sorts (generated by Psycho-Pirate's mask), along with other twisted versions of known characters. Then, his nationality is uncertain.
Kal-El of Earth D
Featured in Legends of the DC Universe: Crisis on Infinite Earths (1999).
Almost certainly Asimov's The Gods Themselves.
The plot description on wikipedia gives most of the detail.
The book is in 3 parts.
Part 1, "Against Stupidity...", deals with the discovery:
Radiochemist Frederick Hallam discovers that a container's contents have been altered. He initially accuses a colleague of tampering with his sample, but eventually ...
The International Space Station...in the opening credits of Enterprise.
Construction started 1998 and completed 2011.
Certainly latest 2009 as, per Wikipedia
The truss and solar panels are also a large part of the station. (launched in multiple flights between 2000-2009)
From Space.com (See Date Link above)
This photo of the International Space ...
To your question "Does the original version of the universe still exist where Marty simply disappears", I would say the answer is "no". I think I'm not really disagreeing with Axelrod's answer since that answer is focused on whether Marty could recreate his original timeline, not on whether it continues to exist in parallel with the original, and Axelrod ...
Eye in the Sky, a 1957 novel by Philip K. Dick; also the (unaccepted) answer to this old question. Does any of these covers ring a bell?
The inside-out cat is in section XIII. The cat-hater is a woman:
Miss Reiss had never liked cats. She had been afraid of cats. Cats were her enemies.
The thing on the floor was Ninny Numbcat. He had been turned inside ...
"Tiger by the Tail" by Alan E. Nourse.
It's a steel bar instead of a wire but otherwise you remembered it perfectly.
This story is often remembered from the popular anthology "50 Short Science Fiction Tales."
I'm pretty certain that this is an Australian TV show from the 1990s called Spellbinder.
It has power suits which can throw balls of lightening, and are recharged by rubbing the cuffs together.
In the first episode, the main characters attempt to create gunpowder, and in a later episode a main character is forced to create gun powder by their captors.
Episodes were aired out of order, so it's not entirely obvious what happened.
Episode 1x06, Summer of Love, was intended to be episode 1x02. At the beginning of this episode, we see Quinn reopen the vortex so that he and Arturo could go through - he had control at that time, as you suggest.
However, due to that slide, the timer was damaged. There's a ...
Sounds like the Neanderthal Parallax by Robert J. Sawyer to me, which is a trilogy composed of Hominids, Human, and Hybrids.
Neanderthals have developed a radically different civilization on a parallel Earth. A Neanderthal physicist, Ponter Boddit, accidentally passes from his universe into a Canadian underground research facility. ...
A Crack in the Line by Michael Lawrence, 2003?
It's been two years since his mother died in a terrible train crash, and Alaric's life continues to unravel. He and his father are barely on speaking terms, and Withern Rise, their Victorian mansion, is in shambles. Trapped at home during a blizzard, Alaric stumbles into a parallel world; a reality in ...
The latest people referenced that match our reality were George W. Bush and Tony Blair, shown in the ENT episode Future Tense:
This was part of a historical database that included Bush's 2003 State of the Union Address.
Fauna of Mirrors - 2697BC
This probably doesn't count, but I believe mythology has this one in the bag. Specifically: the Chinese Myth of the "Fauna of Mirrors". It involves mirrors being used almost exactly as a portal in modern literature.
According to the myth, behind every mirror is a different universe (...
The main theme of that episode (DS9: The Visitor) is that Jake's father was trapped in time. By freeing him, Jake caused that particular timeline to cease to exist.
JAKE SR: You see, Melanie, after the last attempt to rescue my father failed, I spent months trying to figure out what went wrong.
Eventually, I came to understand the nature of what was ...
I'm not sure you could strictly describe the creation of a music track as an historical event, but nuKirk playing the 1994 song Sabotage (by the Beastie Boys) on his Nokia phone would have to be a strong contender.
You can see the London Eye and 30 St Mary Axe (otherwise known as "the Gherkin") in the distant London ...
Some early examples, surely not the first:
Arabian Nights, e.g. "The Adventures of Bulukiya". Arabian Nights subsequently became a big influence on European literature upon the 1704 translation. Would be from ~750 AD at the earliest.
So Gabriel descended and, saluting Bulukiya, opened the gate to him, saying, 'Enter this door, for Allah commandeth me to ...
Although some of the details are a bit off, this sounds like Conquistador by S.M. Stirling.
From the Wikipedia description:
John Rolfe VI is an infantry captain who comes back from World War II with a war wound and few prospects, but in 1946 a radio he is rewiring malfunctions and creates a gateway to a parallel universe. This universe is one in which ...
You're thinking of Manifold: Time (1999) by Stephen Baxter. It is the first book in the Manofold trilogy followed by Manifold: Space and Manifold: Origin.
Time is set on Earth, the inner part of the Solar System and various other universes onwards from the 21st century. The novel covers a wide range of topics, including the Doomsday argument, Fermi ...
Not much to go on here, but this might be West of Eden by Harry Harrison. The protagonist is a human(ish) who was raised by the dinosaurs who had recently discovered and begun to colonize what we'd think of as the new world. As a young adult, he is "rescued" by another group of humans, and has to adjust to living among his own kind, then to act as an ...
This sounds like The Boy Who Reversed Himself by William Sleator. The characters were able to move around in higher-level dimensions (four-dimensional space, five-dimensional, etc.) They didn't visit a mirror universe, exactly — what happened was that, if they weren't careful, they could get themselves turned around and come back to our world as their own ...
What "time travel" story required the traveller to mentally reconstruct his world in order to return to it?
"Flux" by Michael Moorcock and Barrington J. Bayley, first published in New Worlds Science Fiction #132, July 1963, available at the Internet Archive.
1. The protagonist is sent a relatively short distance into the future (maybe a year? I've ...
I suspect this is The Lathe of Heaven (1971) by Ursula K. Le Guin.
The main character, George Orr, suffers from "effective dreaming", which means that his dreams can alter reality. With training, he can use it to achieve desired changes.
He initially receives treatment from a psychiatrist in order to suppress the dreaming, but the psychiatrist realizes ...
A few answers come to mind:
There's the Mirror Universe from TOS, which reappears in later series. It seems to be connected to the primary universe in some way.
There's the antimatter universe, from TOS.
There's a near-unlimited number of quantum realities seen in TNG 7x11, "Parallels".
Then there's the alternate timeline created for the 2009 movie.
This sounds a lot like the novelettes "High Threshold" (published in the March 1951 issue of Astounding) and "The Universe Between" (published in the September 1951 issue of Astounding) by Alan E. Nourse.
These were later combined/expanded into a novel called "The Universe Between" by Alan E. Nourse in 1965.
Here are some additional links I found (1, 2, ...
Possibly in Wonder Woman #59 from 1953:
This issue introduces the concept of a parallel universe alongside "ours". That is, Wonder Woman's, the universe now known as Earth-Two, Pre-Crisis on Infinite Earths. This parallel universe is Earth-59, according to The Essential Wonder Woman Encyclopedia. where alternate versions of everyone live, including Wonder ...