I don't disagree with you. The Improvise feat tree was originally built for my tabletop game. I have a player who wanted his character to be McGuyver. It's an option.
Re Spellbound: I'll have to play it by ear. I tend to pick up everything in FC, but not necessarily right away. For now, I'll say no on the Conjurer.
Doh! I knew I would forget something important in my sleep deprived state - namely, Magic.
Folk in general and dwarves in particular are wary of magic users. Dwarves because they feel it is an affront to the strength and ingenuity their god gave them. The rest are wary because of the dwarves. The area that is now the Union was first influenced by and ultimately ruled by the old Dwarven Empire for close to 1000 years. Negative attitudes kinda rub off on people.
Now that's not to say that every innkeep is going to run screaming if you light your pipe with a flick of your finger. In OOC knowledge terms, most people feel that low level magic (level 0 and 1 spells) is fine. Most practioners of such simple magic (wise women, the village elder, etc.) would simply argue that they *just know things* or that they were blessed by gods. Some few proclaim themselves magi and try to learn more.
Up to about level 3 spells (depends on the jurisdiction), you won't have any trouble. Between levels 4 and 6, there is the expectation (or requirement in some places) that you belong to a known magic school so as to better control your *dangerous* abilities. Some towns even require registration with the City Watch (or equivalent) when you enter. Level 7 through 9 spells virtually require membership in a known school. Untrained use of powerful magics in public can be a crime in human/pech lands and IS a crime in dwarven lands. Citizens of the Hills of the Emerald Dawn will lock you up. The dwarves of the Grey Mountains will execute you.
Most spells are learned through study and practice. Many arcane magic users have a spell book but it serves more as a meditation tool than anything else as, truthfully told, almost all magic is in your head. Some ingredients are needed for truly large workings.
Sorcerers tend to see the slow plodding teaching methods of most schools as annoying at best, and harmful at worst. They feel it lacks the creativity and free wheeling nature of their magic.
Thus those learning a school of magic tend to be bound into that school's spells. They can always transfer to another school (for the appropriate fee or in lieu of money the appropriate quest) if they wish to learn other spells. Most schools require direct learning - Cure I, Cure II, Cure III, etc. - rather than a more freefrom approach.
Sorcerers also have schools though they are often hidden because the authorities don't consider them adequate teaching grounds. However, the instructors - often fellow students - will teach whatever they know.
Also, technology has a tendency to break when around a high level mage - determined by Circle of Power. Mostly this is flavor but it might have a game effect in some cases.
Arcane casters do not get access to any Wish spells. They aren't lost, they are the province of the gods.
Arcane casters only get access to Resurrection I. Resurrection has many repercussions to the established order so it is a highly regualted spell. Higher levels of Resurrection are considered lost and universally considered illegal.
Hope that helps.