Language classes are not the only way to learn Russian. If you cannot or do not want to attend a language school, you can learn Russian online. I am Russian so I did not have a chance to learn it as my second language. However, I used the Internet to learn English. Learning online gives great results.
You can read news on politics and economy in Russian at Gazeta.Ru , Utro.Ru , and Izvestia.ru . A great resource of IT news in Russian is ZDNET.Ru . Check this list of Russian language newspapers and choose the newspaper that covers your area of interest.
Get some Russian textbooks. You will probably get some use out of them. However, do not expect that you will know the language after reading textbooks. Practice is important. When reading, look up new word in a dictionary and make a list of them, then look them through and read the article again. This will help you learn how to use the new words. To master Russian, read as much as you can in Russian.
The Internet is a great place to practice your writing skills. Use forums to communicate with native speakers and people who learn Russian. You will make friends, enjoy writing to them and improve your Russian. Get advantage of learning from your friends. Become a part of the community. This is more important that grammar book and exercises. Book learning alone is never enough.
Listen to Russian
Listen to spoken Russian as much as possible. The more you listen, the easier it will be for you to understand Russian and learn pronunciation. Listen to Russian radio: talk shows, songs, news. Even if you do not understand much, you will get used to the Russian pronunciation, intonation and rhythm of speech. For example, try 101 Radio Channels (Russian songs, Dance 101, Autoradio, and Humor FM).
Start your speaking practice with a pronunciation course. First, buy some language tapes and repeat Russian words after the speaker. Record yourself on tape. This helps you hear your pronunciation and correct mistakes. Find people who speak or learn to speak Russian and make friends with them. Become a part of the community; share your feelings and ideas with other members.
It takes time to develop expertise in any subject including languages. Get interested in the Russian language and learn it because it is fun, not because you have to learn it. Make sure that it keeps being enough fun so that you will be willing to put in a year or more. Textbooks, language classes and constant practicing will help you learn this great language. After all, Russian is worth all the efforts.