Looking for support and feedback from large writing networks and associations throughout the United States?
We have compiled a list of the top associations for American writers which provide access to writer forums and groups, advice and support for various aspects of the publishing industry, writing conferences, and valuable networking opportunities. Check them out!

Mystery Writers of America

Mystery Writers of America (MWA)  is an organization dedicated to raising a higher standard for crime writing and promoting the recognition of those that write in the mystery genre. This organization is open to the public (including those who live outside of the United States). MWA provides scholarships, literacy programs, symposiums and conferences, and forums for writers to interact with others in MWA.

Membership dues are a standard $115 per term for all four types of memberships. Be sure to check out each type of membership they offer, as they each come with different perks and benefits.

See more on their website.

Author’s Guild

Acting as the collective voice of American authors, the Author’s Guild is the nation’s oldest and largest professional organization for writers. Their members range anywhere from journalists to historians to poets and their mission is “to support working writers…and advocate for the rights of writers.”

Membership for this association gives you access to Facebook groups for writers, member discounts, a writer resource library, and seminars and events. Membership dues range between $35 and $125.

See more about their community here.

Poets and Writers

Serving as the nation’s largest nonprofit organization for creative writers, Poets and Writers aims to encourage the professional development of poets and writers and spur the flow of communication throughout the literary community. They offer several programs, forums, workshops, and contests for writers.  

Membership is free and simply requires signing up for an account on their website.

Check out more on their website.

Sisters In Crime

Started in 1987 by Charlotte MacLeod, Kate Mattes, Betty Francis, and others, Sisters in Crime focuses on the networking, advice, and support of mystery authors who are women. They have over 3,600 members and 48 chapters worldwide, ranging from the west to the east coast of the United States.

There are two types of memberships for Sisters in Crime. Choose from either Active or Professional, with dues ranging from $40 to $500.

See more about Sisters in Crime here.  

The Society of Authors

The Society of Authors is a trade union for professional writers, illustrators, and literary translators.  Some of their past members include Tennyson, H.G. Wells, and E. M. Forster. Though located in London, this association is open to all professional writers.

Membership for this group is very specific, but luckily they provide specifics on their website. Prices range from about £69 to £102.

Check out more on their website.

Horror Writers Association

Horror Writers Association (HWA) is a nonprofit organization of published and unpublished writers of dark literature. Joining HWA provides writers with marketing and promotion of their works, career building, and networking opportunities.

They have five types of memberships: supporting, affiliate, associate, academic, and active. Dues range between $48 and $115 per year.  

See more about the membership requirements here.

Academy of American Poets

The Academy of American Poets is the largest membership-based nonprofit organization that advocates for American poets and poetry. This organization, along with its programs and publications, are supported by contributors and membership dues, such as the National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.   

There are several membership options that range between $35 and $2,500 per year.

Visit their website here for more information.

Historical Novel Society

Founded in the UK in 1997, the Historical Novel Society (HNS) serves as an international society for all lovers of historical fiction. They highly support interactions between members and push those that want to volunteer for official roles to do so.

Membership is open internationally to anyone that wants to join. Dues are $50 per year.

See more about this historical fiction society here.

American Society of Journalists and Authors

The American Society of Journalists and Authors (ASJA), founded in 1948 and located in New York City, is a professional organization of independent writers of nonfiction. Their members include freelance writers of magazine articles, nonfiction writing, and trade books. The ASJA provides members with confidential market information, referral service, seminars, workshops, and much, much more.

To join ASJA, there is an application fee of $25, a one-time initiation fee of $50, and annual dues of $235 which are prorated quarterly. Membership requires proof of a sustained professional career as an independent nonfiction writer.

See more about it here.

The Electronic Literature Organization

Also known as E-Lit, the Electronic Literature Organization promotes open circulation, attributed citation, and the preservation of works. Some types of electronic literature they work with are hypertext fiction and poetry, interactive fiction, literary performances online, and literary apps.

They have five types of memberships: Students, unaffiliated artist, or scholar; full-time employed; associate; patron; and institutional. Dues range between $25 and $1,000.

Check out all their membership requirements here.

National Association for Independent Writers and Editors

National Association of Independent Writers and Editors (NAIWE) is an international, professional association for writers and editors. Joining NAIWE ensures that writers gain access to emerging trends and technologies, transitions from employment to freelancing, and collective marketing.

It is very easy to join NAIWE, and very few requirements. Dues are $99 per year.

Check out more about NAIWE here.

Novelists Inc.

Serving as an all-in-one career center for novelists, Novelist Inc. provides hundreds of connections to the global community of authors for all of its members. 85% of their members are self-published and a 72% of members are traditionally published, all due to the connections Novelists Inc. offers members.

In order to be a member, you must have written two works which are either traditionally or Indie published. Membership is $85 per year and there is a one-time application fee of $15.

Visit their website to see more.

Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America

Founded in 1965, Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) is an organization of authors and industry professionals of science fiction and fantasy genres. This group focuses on advocating for the members of its association by assisting members in legal disputes with publishers, administering grants, and offering multiple communication resources for writers.

There are several different membership types to chose from and dues range between $90-$175. Please be aware that there are several requirements to being a member. You can check out those specific requirements here.

National Writers Association

The National Writers Association is a nonprofit organization for writers at any level of experience that aims to enhance the future of writers by continuing education by awarding scholarships and providing workshops and seminars. By joining this group, members receive all kinds of benefits, including but not limited to consultation on contracts and/or agreements, marketing consultation, editing services, networking, and contests.

Membership dues range from $35 to $65 and there are several types of memberships to choose from.

More information about memberships with the National Writers Association is available here.

Writers Guild of America

With guilds in the East and the West, the Writer’s Guild of America negotiates contracts while also launching strike actions for writers. They represent film and television writers, as well as employees of television and radio stations.

In order to be a member of either the western or eastern division of the Writer’s Guild of America, you must be the employee of an employer that is a signatory to a WGA contract.

Find out more about the Writer’s Guild of America here.

Small Publishers, Artists, and Writers Network

Small Publishers, Artists, and Writers Network (SPAWN) seeks to provide education, information, and a supportive network for writers and small business owners of the publishing industry. Becoming a member of SPAWN guarantees access to information on publishers, printer, media, and other resources beneficial to writers.  

There are several different types of memberships and dues range between $35 and $85.

See more about SPAWN here.

Romance Writers of America

Romance Writers of America, founded in 1980, is a nonprofit membership-based association housed in Houston, Texas. This group caters to the needs of career-focused romance writers that seek to either work full-time as a writer of romance or part-time with income that generously supplements his or her main income. Members include published and unpublished romance fiction, publishing industry professionals, and librarians or booksellers that promote the romance genre.

Membership is open to any and all that are serious about the romance genre. Dues are $99 with a $25 processing fee for new or reinstating members.

Click here for more information.

Association of Ghostwriters

Acting as the leading ghostwriting organization of books, speeches, articles, blogs, and social media content, the Association of Ghostwriters is designed to help ghostwriters improve their works and find projects that will produce a profit. They provide writers with monthly seminars, networking opportunities, a job bank, and marketing information.

The Association of Ghostwriters offers two types of memberships: Associate and Professional. Dues range from $69 to $99.

See more here.

Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators

The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) is one of the largest existing organizations for writers and illustrators of children and young adult novels. With over 22,000 members worldwide and 70 regional chapters, SCBWI acts as a network for the exchange of knowledge between all of those in the publishing and writing industries, including illustrators, editors, agents, writers, publishers, educators, booksellers, librarians, and any other advocate for making literature accessible to young people.

Membership is open to anyone interested in children’s literature. Membership rates begin at $95 for the first year and then $80 for renewal. Special rates apply for full-time students.

Click here for more information.   

North Carolina Author’s Network

The North Carolina Author’s Network provides education of writing to all levels of writers of the state of North Carolina. They aim to connect, promote, and serve their members by giving their members opportunities for recognition and resources for advocating for the literary heritage of North Carolina.

This group is open to all writers in all genres from any state in the United States. There are four types of memberships to choose from with dues ranging from $75 to $150 annually.

Find out more here.

Emerging Author’s Network

Created with the mission of creating a community for emerging writers, the Emerging Writers Network (EWN) caters to those seeking recognition and readers for their writing so that they may find as large an audience as possible.

To apply to be a member of EWN, simply email your name, email address, and some information about yourself as a writer/author to wickettd@yahoo.com.

See more about EWN here.

The Children’s Writer’s Guild

The Children’s Writer’s Guild (CWG) is a group of writers, illustrators, ad educators with the mission of promoting children’s media and jumpstart thoughtful conversations about personal narratives, advice, book reviews, and more.

The way to join CWG is by submitting written content to their website for publication. They accept essays, stories, news updates, and much more. See more about submitting your work here.

The Independent Author Network

The Independent Author Network (IAN) has been an important resource for independent authors since 2010. IAN serves independent authors seeking effective and affordable book promotion, and they have over 20,000 members in their network of talented authors.

There are four types of memberships to choose from with IAN, with dues starting at $24.95.

Check out more on their website.

Are you a member of a writer’s association which you don’t see on this list? Mention it in the comments below!

Selina R. Dukes

Book Critic & Editorial Assistant at NY Literary Magazine
Selina is a senior studying Public and Professional Writing and Management at Auburn University. She is set to graduate in December 2017.
Selina enjoys reading international literature and exploring community literacy, both real and virtual. She is an avid blogger and promotes the expression of social commentary.