We have heated with wood for the last ten years or so and find it saves us money for gas or electricity. We get our wood from the city limb drop-off site, off of Freecycle or from neighbors who know we burn wood. We burn just about everything but evergreen types like cedar. Be careful about burning extremely hard woods like osage orange because they spark really bad.
As far as safety, I've learned to stack the wood inside to where it won't fall out when you open the door; lay a fireproof rug in front of the door to catch the sparks; and if your stove has a glass door, don't burn those fire starter logs too close to the door. Last winter I called the fire department because I was sure the glass was about to break it got so hot. It didn't but I learned my lesson.
Both houses we've bought that had wood-burning stoves in them were obviously not designed to be heated with wood. Both stoves were stuck off in a back room and barely heated even half of the house. The one we are in currently heats about 1/3 of the house so DH is considering what he can do to help the heat get to at least the living room. We keep our thermostat at 68 in the winter and wear many layers because the back rooms are frigid. But, it's either do that or go broke paying the gas company.
I really enjoy burning wood because of the smell, the sight of flickering flames and being able to thumb my nose at the utility companies.