The key is to read, try, and understand the demo app in the AWDWR book
first. Don’t try to knock out your CMS as the first project you
attempt. Then, pick a few simple steps to take toward your goal and
tackle them. Search the archives of this list for answers to questions
before you submit a new entry. There is a LOT of information available
from the collective minds here.
I would suggest also getting the book “Rails Recipes” (I chose PDF
format). It has some useful tips for building some of the features you
will need…for example, building your user authentication system (or
more appropriately, using an existing system in your application). For
specific questions, e.g. table names, there are many references to that
in each of the books or on the archives of this list. The short answer
is “yes”…refer to “set_table_name” command. Your menus would be
included in a “layout” in rails, which you would set in some or all of
Welcome to Rails and good luck!