This is a fun one http://www.amazon.com/Hot-Shoe-Diari...4168961&sr=8-2
This is one o those things that requires practice and experimentation.
Auto is fine, where you will see the biggest differences is in learning how to bounce the light around.
Pick a room and a subject and a single direction to point the camera, load a roll and start twisting the head around differently for each shot. Left, right, up, down, even back behind you.
You will pretty quickly get a feel for what happens.