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I’ve been thinking about opening up the Ultimate Cheapskate checkbook (if I can find the keys) and joining some of the professional organizations for freelance writers and authors. The problem is, there are so many different groups out there (e.g. the Authors Guild, the American Journalist and Author Society, the National Writers Union, etc.)
Does anyone have experience or opinions on which groups are worth joining? There are some services I might want to eventually access through such memberships (e.g. various insurances, networking opportunities, etc.), but I’m primarily interested to know which, if any, of the organizations carry the greatest cachet with publishers, agents, and others in the industry. Any opinions or related resources would be appreciated.