Yesterday, a facebook friend posted a message to remind members of my state authors organization that it was time to renew membership. I printed out the form and have it on my desk, ready to add my dues check.
I started thinking about joining writers organizations or groups. Some writers join multiple groups while others shun them all. Are you a joiner or are you happy staying in your own writing world?
For me, never connecting with other writers would be kind of lonely, but perhaps that's because I am a social being. I thrive on social contact. I enjoy attending conferences where I mingle with other writers. I believe in being a member of at least one writers organization.
I joined Kansas Authors Club fourteen years ago. They offer me an opportunity to talk to other writers at district meetings and state conventions. Their website provides information that helps me know about writing opportunities in Kansas and what other Kansas writers are publishing. And more!
Most states have a similar organization with members who are at different stages of their writing life. Beginners can benefit a great deal by joining, and seasoned writers still gain knowledge and a chance to confer with other writers.
Besides your state organization, there are plenty of national and international writers' clubs or associations. Since the advent of the internet, it's easier than ever to participate, as many have websites which offer much to the writer.
There are groups that specialize in one form of writing, such as poetry or mystery writers or seience fiction authors. Others are more general. Some require nothing more than paying annual dues, while several ask for writing samples and publication history before accepting a member. There are prestigious groups and some that only a few people have ever heard of.
If you've never joined an organized group like this, look into it. Google the topic of writers clubs or organizations and you'll find a lengthy list. Pick one and send in your dues. If you feel you've gained little by the end of the year, don't renew your membership. It's as simple as that.
Like all things, however, the more you put into it personally, the more you will receive. Joining and never attending a meeting or never reading the newsletter makes little sense.
One word of caution--join too many writing organizations and you'll cut into your writing time. Guess my dad was right when he preached moderation in all things.