The Writers League of Texas: Membership Has Its Privileges

After a number of years of hearing about WLT, attending some of their pre-pandemic Third Thursday events at Book People (the largest independent book store in Texas), and meeting some folks at Owen Egerton’s One Page Salon, I finally joined up. I don’t know why I didn’t do it sooner. I suppose it had to do a bit with the Wayne’s World motto: “We’re not worthy!” When actor-director Tate Donovan asked me at a OPS if I was a writer, I said yes for the first time. Hey, that makes me one degree of separation from Jennifer Aniston, whom he dated after playing her boyfriend on Friends. As we all know, she’s well known for her books. Strike that, reverse it. I mean looks! Humunuh humunuh! No, it’s her mad acting skillzl OK, that’s tangential, but it was diversionary. Mmm, more big wordz!

Blue T Shirt with Writer in blue text
Merch from WLT.

But now it feels official. And by the way the first rule of Writers League is not the same as the first rule of Fight Club: You actually do talk about Writers League. But as a writer who has rekindled his love of reading books, I know that Chuck Palahnuik wrote that book and some other wacky ones. But you can you also write about Writers League. Especially if you have a bicycling blog and there’s nothing much bike-worthy to post about. Or rather, about which to post. See, A Dude Abikes knows some word things, despite going to Texas public schools.

A writer writes, and writes what they know. I’ve been doing that every day for over three years now. But I’ve never been in a league. Well, I was in a soccer league, so I misspoke. And I once won a one rating for a music recital sponsored by the University Interscholastic League, but I don’t think that conferred upon me the status of member. (By the way, my favorite use of the word “status” is this: “What’s your status, flatus?” It’s one of my favorite little jokes that I ever wrote, way back when farts were hilarious. This just in: pooting is still funny.) Anyway, as we old farts know from the credit card commercial: Membership has its privileges.

I mean, it’s like lots of life: you pays your money and you takes your choice, right? Aldous Huxley, author of Brave New World, wrote that. Quoting other writers is a very important part of being a writer. Way up there with calling yourself a writer. Bth make you seem smarter than you may actually be. Even though I haven’t read that one. I think I tried or it wasn’t assigned in high school English. If I watch the televised version of that novel, and read the subtitles, does that count? Not for my 30 minutes a day or more of book reading.

WLT Logo

Anyway, the Writers League of Texas has been around a good long while. I won’t bore you with the history, because I don’t know it, and maybe that history is fascinating. Anyway, 40 years ago this year some people started it, and it’s still here. I will tell you their purpose, though, as I understand it in three short words: : Craft. Business. Community. All three are important if you’re going to try to publish a memoir, as I am hoping to do. \

What are the perks of becoming a WLT member, you might be asking? Well, I’m glad you did, because I’m happy to tell you, from their website, natch. I word I used to hate, due to its use by a certain movie reviewer I used to despise (I’d go see badly reviewed movies he gave bad reviews to out of spite). It’s right up their with hizzoner (short for His Honor). I digress. So yeah, the benefits:

Member Benefits Include:

  • Access to the website’s Member Dashboard, including to and a listing in the Member Directory, special promotions and resources for writers, & more. 
  • Receive steep discounts on all paid programming, a savings of $60 on every registration. This includes online classes, the annual Agents & Editors Conference, and the annual Summer Writing Retreat.
  • Eligible for monthly Open Office Hours, the chance to have a 30-minute consultation with our experienced staff to talk about any and all writerly questions or concerns.
  • Invited to promote and sign their books at the WLT booth at special in-person events, including the Texas Book Festival every Fall and the San Antonio Book Festival every Spring.
  • Invited to submit news items for the monthly Member Mailer.
  • Invited to be interviewed for our Meet the Members column on our blog, Scribe.
  • Access to special Members Only events throughout the year, including monthly Member Meet-Ups, game and movie nights, & more. 
  • Premium Memberships are a great way for writers to enjoy added benefits while giving additional support to the WLT and its ongoing programs.
  • Community Membership is a great option for business or entities offering services to writers. Community membership comes with opportunities to reach our community of writers through Community Member News posts, guest blog posts, our website, & more. 

That’s a pretty darn good list, I’m sure you’d agree. Although I currently have two busy beavers working hard at “beta” reading my memoir, I may benefit from finding a critique partner (pahdnuh, as it’s pronounced down hea’ in Texas) — someone else who is doing the same kind of writing. That’s a key benefit, but there are many things people can access for free, like their blog, podcast, YouTube channel, Third Thursdays, and more.

Any given week there is at least one class, and often more, or some event. That’s good, because I’ve got plenty to learn about the whole thing. So I’m glad I finally took the plunge, and grateful to Kelsey, Sam, Becka, board member Rodney, and former program director Michael Noll. Before he departed for another opportunity, he once told me (at an OPS), that I shouldn’t give up on the idea of being published. He may be wrong and I have to self-publish. But if we can get the book ready for the fall Agents and Editors Conference, perhaps I’ll get lucky.

Well, that’s it for now and the WLT. Sounds like a yummy sandwich. To learn more, check out writersleague.org. By the way, they’re a non-profit organization, so they love to receive tax-deductible donations. And of course there’s always gift certificates for your favorite fathlete, cyclist yogi, walker, reader, stretchy band user, blogger, and book writer — MOI!

If you want to send your old pal A Dude Abikes to some classes or the Agents & Editors Conference (like $450!), leave a comment and we’ll dish!

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