Workflow for Sony hdr xr100! Newbie here.Kindly help!

Hi to all..I have recently discovered this fantastic site and I spend a lot of time reading here.
I have a question that might seem very stupid for you genius lot..but from whatever I have read you all seem to be really nice and glad to help so I mustered up the it is...
I have a Sony Hdr XR100e which shoots in AVCHD format at 50i @ 1920x1080...I use adobe cs4 suite at the moment and m planning to move onto cs5 soon.
The camera uses internal harddisk to store but I copy the stream on a local and then I move them into Premiere for editing.

I wanted to know what should be my workflow to get the best out of my camera?
Is there any format I should be converting them to before I move them into premiere to start with? I have a decent AMD Quad Core PC with 4 gigs ram..but rendering time looks suspiciously slow in AE,especially. Even with a simple Magic Bullet looks applied.
Should I deinterlace and convert the clips into something else before moving with editing?
I use Southbooth to clean up my audio....Should I output my sound separately as an AIFF file?

All the stuff I have made so far have been shorts (10mins or less) but I'm actually finalizing a script for a feature length and wanted to know an alternate workflow before I head onto it.

My primary target would be dvd,internet or some film festival so I guess converting it to 24p isnt that important.

Thank you so much for reading it. Looking forward to replies. Apologies if this sounds stupid.