I've been on and off doing this stuff for a while. While I won't claim to be Neil Strauss, most I think would say I'm quite good, somewhere between a natural and a pua. I don't believe in a lot of the technical stuff, although I definitely support some of the key components -- have a fall-back story, how the conversation starts doesn't matter, they're as uncomfortable as you are. It's stuff that if you take 2 seconds to think about, is pretty much common sense, but few people do.
One thing I've realized that falls into this category is that that there's nothing more critical to picking up girls than having a group of guys you genuinely enjoy -- guys that if you ended up spending the night just hanging with, you'd be content. Not only are girls attracted to groups that seem to have something good going on and are you less desperate and therefor aggressive, it makes your life just generally better to have a good group of guys to fall back on.
A while back, I posted on this forum explaining that while I have some good friends in NY, many of my best friends (from school, from home etc) were in other cities. I'd find myself often with a group of girls (I'd have a female friend who I'd have bring her friends), and then have to scramble to find guys I could vouch for to even out the numbers. I was looking to find folks to come out, and I got a couple responses, from one guy in particular who I've now become quite close with. We go out frequently (recently it's been ~2-3x week), and it's been excellent. We have a tremendous amount of fun, and so far at least have been quite successful. We've decided though we need 1 more.
Technically we're looking for someone to 'sarge' with, although more, for just someone cool to hang with. We're both good guys I'd say -- like to have fun, quite chill. We both have jobs we're really happy with and solid backgrounds and networks in NY (I grew up in the area, and also finished harvard 08, so a lot of people came down). Have had trouble finding folks with both income and time to go out, so that would definitely be a plus, but no pre-reqs... just looking for a good guy who we can enjoy spending time with.
If you're interested, shoot me a note with a little about yourself, and if it makes sense, we'll set up some time to connect.
Look forward to hearing from you,