I live in far north Queensland, Australia, one hour inland from the coastal city of Cairns. The Great Barrier Reef provides a massive breakwater so no surf to deal with and plenty of tropical islands. I paddle a flat water racing K1, a surfski and an ocean ski but I wanted something that I could travel further afield and carry gear. I also liked the idea of using my legs to contribute to the workload rather than just my torso and shoulders. I wanted to row. The Colin Angus designed rowcruiser was just what I was after. I have never built anything more complicated than a picture frame so I took the option of getting the sheets of ply cut by a CNC router. It saved a lot of time and the panels came out true.
The construction manual does the job. My advice for beginners is to read the instructions and then follow them. It is as simple as that and you will end up with a decent craft and and a good experience. There is an abundance of Youtube videos on every aspect of this construction technique for night time viewing. Read, plan, go for it. And if you stuff up, just start again.
It is handy to have family members help out. I used my sons once with the wiring and once with the sheathing. As mentioned in the manual by Colin, it is quite satisfying seeing the shape come together at this stage.
The fillets were a challenge but by the end of construction I could fillet like a pro. With help the outside was sheathed in fibreglass and the shell was getting stronger.