Welcome from one of the many hand quilters here on the board. As everyone else has mentioned, all of the parts of quilting take practice. If you have a flat surface that you are using your mat and rotary cutter, you can also try a couple of spring clamps to help hold the ruler in place. Also helps to have a ruler with a lip on the one end to keep is straight on the mat. Another tip is to put clear rubber or sandpaper (I like/use rubber) dots on the 4 corners of the ruler. Gives some resistance while it's on the fabric. One of the reasons I really enjoy quilting is that I really enjoy sewing on my machine but also like to do hand work - just about any kind. With machine piecing and hand quilting I get the best of both worlds. Do you have a LQS near you for classes or just to ask some questions? Does anyone in your family or friends quilt that they could give you some hints/clues? We're all here to help but sometimes seeing something 'up close & personal' makes it 'click' better/quicker.