Is it necessary for one to join the Society of Children's Book Writers And Illustrators? In other words, does joining increase your chances of getting published or getting accepted by a literary agent? I recently wrote a picture book (my first), sent it to a local small press, and received an email from the editor, rejecting my manuscript and urging me to join. I don't want to invest my money into something if it doesn't exactly make getting published easier. The truth is, I've never had a book accepted anywhere, and the odds are so difficult for me when I even try. I want so much to know the joy of having a book accepted and not having to pay for it myself. Also, what exactly do you get after joining? Is everything just online? I would want something in hard copy as well, not merely over the computer, in terms of publications, etc.

Barbara