How do I use skill points in Mafia Wars? Is there a recommended ratio for energy/ stamina/ attack/ defense/ health?
When you first begin, it is generally a good idea to go for lots of Energy. In fact, you may want to get nothing but Energy for several hundred points. The advantage to this is that more energy causes you to earn skill points faster.
After you get your energy up, start putting points into Defense, Stamina and a little bit of Health. Don't worry about Attack at this point, as it doesn't matter much compared to your mafia size. Still keep putting points into Energy.
Once you get up to about 1500 Energy, you'll be in great shape to move into whatever build you want.