I have a backyard, and I start with about 2/3 chimney of Kingsford to get it going. When the coals are white, I dump them in the firebox and toss one split on. For my wood, I use splits a little bigger than wrist size, but cut down to 10-12" in length. The reason is that with the size of the backyard, you'll have a smaller fire and when I get the coals going, I do not want to have wood hanging over either side of the pile, as it'll create un-burned, white smoke. The trade off is that with smaller wood, you'll need to toss one on about every 45 minutes or so.
I let my pit run at the temp it likes, which is right between 250-260. I can run it hotter, it just takes more management. At the 250~ish, without looking I can tell it's time to add a split when it drops to 240. I toss one on and it goes up to 280 for a few minutes as it catches fire, then right back down. To get it hotter, I add fuel a little more frequently.
Enjoy. I've been amazed at how good my food has been coming out, and I'm a noob.
UDS / Jambo Backyard / Red Thermopen