I'm not in real estate, so I hope others with experience can weigh in. I will say that when I seek to accomplish any task, like learning a foreign language (Chinese and Japanese), I started at the bottom and have just kept chipping away and grinding. So, I think that should apply to real estate as well.
A family friend of mine and @Chris has done quite well in real estate just by being a hustler, constantly making connections, and putting himself out there. So, that would be advice. Just dive in, start making connections when you can, and doing what you're doing right now, which is asking for advice. Good luck!