Hi Goodell, nice to know that you got your equipment. Try to read a bit more on the dreaded "Burr" and watch the JKI vids. At first I started sharpening counting the strokes, not bad results but it took longer to get the knife as sharp as I wanted.
After that I finally grasped the burr concept that BDL suggested me and I could get the knife sharp faster and now it wasn't a matter of luck if the knife was going to be sharp or not... And finally by watching the vids from Jon Broida, I learned that to sharpen both sides of the knife it wasn't necessary to change from left hand to right hand when sharpening (I was wearing down the knife more on one side than on the other and given uneven edges) you just switch the sides grasping the handle with the same hand, wich sounds logic, but I was doing it wrong.
The tips of the knives are always tricky at first, and truth to be told it's still my weak point, now the tip gets as sharp as the rest but I have to pay attention and sometimes retouch it several times.
Practice amigo...That's the only secret! A mistake that I was doing at first, was not to put enough pressure while stroking the knife, and by doing that, I was puzzled by not getting the mythical burr. At some point I tought that finding an unicorn was easier than to raise a burr, for me the burr was more of an urban legend than a real possibility , but the first time I started adding a good amount of pressure on the first side of the knife, I passed my thumb and it got almost stucked... By the burr ...I felt it ! , it was there and it was loud and clear ...The burr is like an "O"... You know that you got one! You can feel it!!... You don't feel it ? , or do you feel "some sort" of it? ...Man...You did it wrong! Try harder and you'll eventually get there.
I'm sure that you'll find better advice and you'll develop your own style soon. You have great tools to start with, have fun and experiment!
And if you don't feel like you're getting a lot of feedback from the finer side of the stone... Don't worry, it cuts too, and soon you'll develop more sensitivity on your hands to notice that the stone is cutting. Also, look how the water starts to get dark and muddy on the surface, that's metal from the edge.
Take care and keep us updated!