Re: Matthew S: Go to DIY shows and talk to people, talk to the the bands you really like/inspire you. The most important thing is don’t get discouraged, there are so many bands just be consistent and keep talking to people. Find out who throws the shows you like and talk to them. It helps if you have some recorded music online for people to check out. Stay positive, be patient, stay consistent, and stay ready/keep practicing your set from when the time comes. Last thing - practice as much as you can as a band, we can all always use more practice.
Re: Keeley M: You can begin to start booking shows for your band by reaching out online to venues, booking collectives, and promoters! If there is a submission form on a venue's website, fill that in and send a message stating who you are and what kind of music you play, etc. You usually should have some kind of online presence with recorded music or video clips of your band playing so that the promoter can see what your music is like before booking you. Work on setting up an EPK (electronic press kit) if you want to get booked at as many places as you can. If you want to book other bands to play at your show or venue, just send them an email or DM on their social media page explaining who you are and what you do.
For example "Hi, I'm [name] with [name of venue or collective] and would love to have your band play at our upcoming show on [date] please let me know if you're interested, thanks!"