I'm a big proponent of shooting slow and close until you get the dynamics of good shooting down. 7 yards is a great starting point. Shoot slow and methodically, practicing good trigger control, and trigger reset, proper stance and proper grip. Shoot at this range until you can get repeated results within a good 2" group or less. Then back up the target to 12 yards and repeat the process. After you achieve repeatable results at 12 yards, back it up to 15 yards and repeat. (Your groups might get a bit bigger at longer ranges)
Now, if you are practicing for the soul purpose of defensive shooting, you can focus your time on the 7-12 yard range, but please, do not get caught in the trap of "I must shoot faster". Take your time, do lots of dry fire practice at home (safely of course). Do not even practice drawing from a holster until you are completely comfortable with the controls on your pistol. Like you can run it with your eyes closed, comfortable. (not that you'd want to hehe) I recommend to people that they do dry fire/draw practice a minimum of 1000 draws before ever trying to draw from the holster with a live round. This sounds like a lot, and it sounds tedious, but it's much better than putting a hole in your leg on accident.
Shooting slow and close builds your confidence as well, if you try to jump right into the hard stuff, you will probably get frustrated and do the thing that bothers me most about new shooters... the dreaded "This gun sucks, it's not me, it's the gun!" routine. Start slow, get smooth, then worry about distance and speed much MUCH later.
Good luck and Shoot Safe.
PS if you don't recognize any of the terms that are underlined, you need to ask some more questions, and please do. Any one of us is here to help when we can.