I joined a local writing organization a couple of months ago in hopes that it would provide an environment of like-minded people for me to learn from, bounce ideas off of, and grow as a writer in this process in general. I must say, it turned out to be just that!
There is so much to be gained from joining an organization. Outside of the networking opportunities alone, you can gain so much knowledge to help you through this process. Writing organizations are for seasoned and newbie writers alike. My particular group meets monthly and thus far each meeting has consisted of guest speakers (published authors) offering their expertise on the self-publishing process vs. the traditional publishing route. Reading information online is helpful. There’s no doubt about that. But there is something to be said about being face-to-face with an author and having the opportunity to bounce your questions and ideas off of them and receiving honest feedback in return. The setting is intimate which in itself offers a conversational environment that puts one in the mind of a fireside chat. What a warm setting for a Q & A about self-publishing.
In addition to the chat opportunities, being a member of an organization provides access to multiple writers, editors, publishers, printers, any and all things writing. I enjoy receiving information about upcoming writing opportunities including contests, writing conferences, critique groups, and submissions to the organizations publications. I knew this would open a door to a whole new aspect of becoming published, but nothing could have prepared me for what I got.
Writing organizations have so much to offer the writing community. I can’t reiterate enough the importance of finding one in your area and joining. You only stand to benefit yourself when you do.