Re: Whats next???
I started tying on my own, with a Wolly Bugger in early January, and then starting to tie some of the easier patterns in Charlie Craven's book. Slhortly thereafter, I started in an 8-week tying class sponsored by the local Federation of Fly Fishers chapter.
Last night was the last night of the class, and we tied a deer hair popper and a Muddler Minnow. Fifteen new tiers, all spinning deer hair.... There was deer hair EVERYWHERE!!! LOL!!!!
Since the first of the year, I've tied WELL over 120 flies (each week of class after the first week - where we learned the tools, basic wraps, whip finishing, half hitches, etc, we tied two different patterns, and had to tie five of each fly, so I have 70 flies just from the class)! Additionally, I've tied 24 flies for two swaps that I'm in. Actually, more like 30, because I didn't like some of my pheasant tail nymphs.....
If it's at all a possibility, get hooked-up with your local Federation or Trout Unlimited Chapter, and see if they have a tying class. For me, it was a great way to learn, meet some new friends, and afterwards, have a couple of cold, carbonated, adult beverages! I've found tying to be a MUCH better evening/afterwork past-time then just sitting in front of the tube with my laptop warming my lap.....
If you CAN'T get involved with a group, then my recommendation would be to get a copy of Charlie Craven's book as a great step-by-step way to learn, starting with simple techniques, and advancing in difficulty.
Good luck, and enjoy yourself!!!
BTW - The local Federation chapter (which I've now joined) is manning a tying demo table at the local LL Bean this weekend, and they've asked me, the new guy, to be there for a few hours on Saturday to demo and help new-comers to tie either a Wolly Worm (similar to Bugger, but with shorter, hair tail) or a foam ant. (And LL Bean is supplying all the materials, too!)
"A leader with great passion and few skills always outperforms a leader with great skills and little passion." Chief Rick Lasky