Since it's always better to deal with someone who has "been there, done it", you might consider sending a "private topic" email to some of the "gurus" on this board as they are obviously "in the business". I'm sure they won't steer you in the wrong direction. Remember you don't need a TA in your backyard. TAs can be just as effective for you on the other side of the country.
Good luck "branching out". Cruise lines do not come in one size fits all.