Hi THERE! Welcome to FW! It is an amazing site and I'm so delighted you found us. For me FW was an answer to prayers. I have learned and grown leaps and bounds in the past couple of years. The great thing about this site is the people here truly care about one another and genuinely want to help everyone become the best writer they can be.
It sounds like you have a wonderful story going. I'm impressed. That's a cool thing about FW, there is such a diversity of genres. Your fantasy story will fit right in and it sounds like there is some historical and Biblical fiction in there too.
One of the best ways to hone your writing skills is to participate in the weekly challenges. We get around 100 stories each month and I would say they get the most readers. If you can afford the few dollars a month to become a Gold or Platinum member, the benefits of the challenges alone are worth it. For me the topic has taught me to stretch my imagination and to think outside the box. The word limit has made me tighten my writing which helps get rid of sentences or descriptions that aren't vital to the story. Best of all, having a deadline helps me to write on a regular basis. I tend to procrastinate and with a deadline looming it's a tad harder to do,
The message boards are packed with good places to get to know one another. One of my favorite spots is the Pacific Coast Rest Stop. You don't have to live there, I'm from Western NY but it is a delightful small group that tease a tad, pray a lot and love unconditionally.
The Open Forum is a great place to find general writing questions. People will talk about self-publishing vs traditional. You may see a thread about punctuation or grammar there too.There are quite a few people there who have had experience with traditional publishers as well as some self-publishers. If you're not sure about a certain company or wonder about writing a query letter that is a great place to check out. viewforum.php?f=1
The Prayer Forum is a great place to pray for other members or to add your request. There is something special about knowing virtual strangers are praying for me. What a sense of relief. This is the link to that --http://www.faithwriters.com/Boards/phpBB2/viewforum.php
The Water Cooler is another great place to get to know people or just to pop in and talk about the weather or pretty much anything. viewforum.php?f=4
One of my favorite things about FW is the Critique Corner. You can submit one story and asked for feedback but before you can submit another one you have to leave feedback for someone else. I think this is great to encourage others to leave feedback. I've also found giving constructive criticism helps me discover what I like or don't like in my own work as well.
If you would like to PM with any questions about your story or would like me to read a bit of it, I'd be delighted to help out. You just click on my username on the left and it should take you to my profile. If you use the boards PM you don't have to be a paying member but the site one is only available to paying members.
Most of all just explore and have fun. Jump in on any conversations you might have an interest in. Don't hesitate to answer any questions you might have either.