Yup, I'd say that the topic is too general/broad for a single Photo.SE question. So, my best advice for you would be:
- Read up on the questions tagged "portrait" here on Photo.SEquestions tagged "portrait" here on Photo.SE. There's lots of good stuff already.
- Re-list your points in multiple questions. Don't worry, that's OK, assuming they haven't already been asked. Smaller questions allow for easier answers.
- Find a good book on portrait photography and study up on the basics. (What constitutes a "good book on portrait photography is yet another question, though you should check out this one firstthis one first.