Top 10 Wizarding Fails

Rincewind stands out as a champion of bumbling wizardry. Further study: Read the Discworld books of Terry Pratchett, particularly "The Colour of Magic" and "The Light Fantastic." Copyright Paul Kidby 2013 all reserved, &

The wizard Rincewind finds a perfect home at the dead center of this list. He's a man of meager plots at best and, for all his legendary ineptitude, he's yet to stumble into a fate worse than death. He carries on thanks to his unequaled survival instinct, extreme cowardice and the blessing/curse of one or more deities and demigods.

Rincewind occasionally helps save Discworld from this doom or another, but he also boasts an impressive ability to solve minor problems by turning them into major disasters. So it all kind of balances out. Most impressively, he has almost no magical skill whatsoever. Aside from a single arcane spell accidentally lodged in his brain, Rincewind's sorcerous acumen is mostly a matter of book smarts.

The lesson: On the plus side, take heart that even the most useless of wizards enjoys certain survival privileges. But here's the other side of the coin: Wizards by their very nature stumble into dangerous and terrifying circumstances. Don't run, because you'll wind up at the center of the story anyway.