You only have direct control of your own character. Your character may have a spouse, a family member, or even a pet, over which only you have control, but that's about it. You may not control the actions of other characters.
Stick to writing about what your character knows and is aware of.
As roleplaying is part writing, part reading, part gaming, and part using your imagination, it is important that your posts be legible and easy to use. Try to avoid netspeak, leetspeak and short hand writing. Try to seperate dialogue and action. Posting in third person and using past tense tends to help.
If you are going to write something out of character, then please mention it as an OOC comment. The best way to do this, is to put the OOC comment between the OOC tags in the post.
Your character plays a role in the game. You can choose to play a small role or a major role. It is up to you. You can choose to develop your character with personal turns. You get one personal turn per game year. You will also perform services for your faction with the faction turn. If you are new to the game or a bit unsure as to how to play, it is probably best to stick to a supportive role of an ordinary officer.
With a maximum of 150 factions in the game, there can be plenty of factions you can choose to join. You can also create a faction. If time is a concern, avoid playing a ruler.
The gameworld is a vast and sometimes dangerous place for your character to live in, so it is best to be in a faction together with other players who can be your friends and allies. On the other hand joining a faction with lots of other players will make it hard for your character to get noticed.
Try not to get caught up in the statistics, sure it is important, but remember there is also roleplay besides strategy. Immerse yourself into the gameworld and the story. Winning is not everything. Sometimes playing the role of the underdog can be more fun, than being the ruler of a powerful empire.
As the game progresses, so too will your character. There are a variety of ways to gain experience for your statistics:
There are also non-player characters in the game. These can be spouses, distant family members, or slaves of a player, but also characters in quests. Spies, scouts, common soldiers in an army and other minor characters can also be non-player characters.