It occurs to me that a number of readers of TechNet Magazine may fall into the category of "novice developer" (not that there isn't plenty to learn and explore in the IT field - that's why we're all here! - but it never hurts to round out one's skills).  Anyway, Matt Graven, one of the editors at MSDN Magazine and TechNet Magazine, has a great post over on the MSDN Magazine blog about getting started as a developer. Definitely worth a read!

Link to MSDN Magazine : So You Want to Learn to Program