The fabulous advice from Mark Twight, the trainer for the cast/crew of the movie "300," bears repeating again, and again. Yes yes, I know you have read it before. There's more after the quote, just be patient. There is a method to the madness.
"If you weren't given the gift you can't get the gift so the best you can do - if your goal is important - is work as hard as you possibly can, pay attention every hour of every day and then maybe, maybe if you've done enough and been smart enough you'll emerge from the muck of mediocrity to shine a bit brighter than you shone before. Then, upon reflection you might decide your goal is a bit more important so you'll start paying attention every minute of every hour of every day. You'll find people who are better than you and you'll take an empty cup when you meet them. Their example will destroy or inspire you and if it's the latter you may stay and learn. You might imitate, doing as they do because you've already accepted that you do not know best - if you did you'd be leading the group they were trying to join. Perhaps being exposed to their superior ability will drive you to work harder than you thought possible, or necessary. Maybe you'll overcome your self-imposed (or worse, society-imposed) limitations and shine even more brightly. Wow, you're getting it: positive reinforcement for hard work and suffering. So maybe you give your goal even more significance and you begin cutting away the ideas and the expectations and the people who you believe prevent you from achieving it. Now you become a real selfish prick, and you begin paying attention every second of every minute of every hour of every day, and you sustain your awareness for weeks and months at a time. You no longer think yourself a unique snowflake, you're a steel-edged blade shaped like a snowflake and you're spinning at warp speed. You're the biggest fish in the pond. You're a badass. Now you have options.
If you think you haven't yet done enough, and you could do more, you might begin to understand that, the more capable you become, the higher the mountain rises ahead of you. At that moment you may recognize the existence of a legitimately serious group, ahead of you, above you, somewhere you're not. They are silent, implacable, constantly improving and evolving and because they are truly capable they are accessible to those who are genuine. Among them there's no defensiveness, no posturing or pretending, and they aren't interested in anyone else's. Selection for such a group isn't based on physical performance alone. Issues of character and commitment, and discipline and persistence balance physical talent. Because you clawed your way out of the muck, were "up all night, dedicated" and maintained interest for long enough to differentiate yourself from the short-attention-span sporting dilettantes who commonly brush up against this group they might accept you as an apprentice. If you empty your cup your chances are better. If you redouble your efforts your odds improve again."
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I know every academy has sorcerers... and most sorcerers have apprentices. Most sorcerers only have one apprentice. If you want to apprentice yourself to a sorcerer, you have to find the right one, the right timing, and be of the right mindset to gel with theirs.
You can't ask them to take you on too. At least, I don't feel like I can. If they are willing to teach you, they'll make it clear, and if they are already stretched thin, it doesn't help you to put them in a position where they have to deny you. They're sorcerers in part because they are good teachers, and to make them feel badly that they don't have the bandwidth to accommodate is uncool.
Normally, I think sorcerers and apprentices are both guys, just statistically speaking. But I also suspect that many of the best female fighters might have been apprenticed to a male sorcerer by way of some sort of romantic relationship-- whether mutual, or just interest on the part of one party or another. Nothing wrong with that and please don't flame me for saying it. Just noting that if you're female and NOT blessed with a relationship like this with a sorcerer, it might make it a little tougher to get tucked into an apprenticeship than it seems for an equally dedicated guy.