I have been in your exact spot. Well, I say that because 3 months have passed now and I have been learning so much that I don't really feel as much like a newbie like I did when I first began. That said, I have never been a cyclist and have never known much about the cycling world, and it was in this state of being that I decided to take a cross country bicycling tour across the U.S.
For the past three months I have been an animal for information related to the tour and bicycles and everything related. This site you are on has been the number 1 site in educating me in SO much. ACA is truly awesome and the people here seem eager to help. I have also learned that there is absolutely no question that can not be answered online somewhere.
Just be yourself and ask every question that comes to mind, and then, start logging everything you learn and building your "Touring" folder which will build to be a wealth of information.
For instance, the question of whether to use panniers (which I had no idea what they were) or a bob sled. There will be several people who will tell you that the topic has been discussed umpteen times and that you should do a search, and then there will be a few who will feed you some great information. I can tell you that I am utterly convinced about using panniers, now that I know what that is.
but that's just me.
I also did a ton of research about what bike to buy for a tour. My research once again, began with questions on these ACA forums. I bought a Surly LHT and it's perfect.
My point is that these forums are gold, so ask away and start learning.
Go ahead and message me if you want to learn a lot of what I have learned. The learning is a blast. It sounds like it's a whole new world to you, just as it was to me. It's a fun world, I can tell you that!
Contact me if you want to.