We tried numerous approaches including allowing people to dewiz back to their old characters, then we tried a penalty depending on how much work you did as a wizard. All of these approaches offered little help.
We finally came up with the idea of allowing players to 'build' an area while still retaining their player. In order to do this we have an additional copy of the mud running on a differant port with channels linked between the 2 muds so that the builder can still remain in contact with other wizards and the players. Wizards can also log into the 'builder' mud, and often do to help the builders. This version of the mud is a stripped down version of the real mud. Builders cannot view spells/skills or any areas other than the ones given as examples.
This solution allows the builder to keep his/her player in the real mud, and still help contribute to the mud. This has also become the first step to becoming a full wizard on the real mud. Any player wanting to be a full wizard must first complete his/her first area on the builder mud, and then will be promoted accordingly on the real mud.
However, the most important requirement is not something that we can know about you just from you filling out a form. It is the willingness to make a commitment to Islands of Myth. The willingness to take the time that is necessary to learn things here and to do things properly. Above all, it is the willingness to live up to the responsibility you will accept if you are chosen to become one of the people who make dreams into reality (or a close approximation) here at Islands of Myth.
There is no need for a mentor - Mixer should be the main point of contact for builders. Other wizzes such as Zifnab & Sigwald are incredibly knowledgeable and universally helpful to builders. Its quite possible that another wizard or even an experienced builder could take on a mentoring role as time goes on.