For a new player, one of the most important things you can do is to find a higher ranked player to be your liege lord (that makes you the vassal!). You will get a daily honor boost from having a liege lord as well as be able to use the troops they station at your village to defend your castle. Having a liege lord also signals to other players that you are under your liege lord's protection and that if they attack you, your liege lord may retaliate against them! The higher a player’s rank, the more vassals they can have, and the greater the difference in rank, the more honor the vassal will receive, so if you haven’t received a vassal request, try sending a friendly mail to some of the players at the top of the leaderboard and ask if they will be your liege lord.
Remember: you can only use a liege lord's troops to protect your castle, you cannot use them to attack. Furthermore, if the liege lord uses these troops to launch an attack from your village, the troops will not be available to protect your castle. Good communication between liege lords and their vassals is important!