You must seek a Master Mason that has known you for at least a year and ask him for a Petition. This will start the process and literally, "put your foot in the doorway of Freemasonry. No Mason may actually solicit you for membership. This would be a Masonic offense. To become a Mason, you must be a man, of majority age, acknowledge belief in a Supreme Deity and the immortality of the soul, be of good morals and reputation, must seek admission of his own free will and accord, must be recommended by a Mason (or by Masons), must be unanimously elected to membership, and must be willing to assume an obligation to the fraternity, but you will not be asked to swear profane oaths; you will not be asked to assume obligations which are incompatible with his religious or civil duties, and to those duties which he owes to his family or his fellow man.
You can find Brother Master Masons in all walks of life. There may be a Brother at your place of work, where you go to shop for clothes, groceries, at your church, temple or synagogue. In essence, anywhere in your community that you go, you might find a brother. Sometimes a Brother will display the Masonic Square and Compasses on a coat lapel or even as a ring.
The process in becoming a Mason may take several months to almost a half year depending upon the area of the country you live and work in. Once you have filled out the Petition For The Three Degrees, you may or may not be asked to submit a fee. As in all fraternal orders, some require a payment of the fees for all degrees or just the first degree. It just depends upon the locality.
Once your petition has been submitted with either the full or partial payment of fees, it will be presented to the Lodge Secretary. The Lodge Secretary will read the petition at the next stated business meeting for that lodge. This might happen during the month that you submit the application or in the following month. Many lodges will often hold their meetings in the first week of the new month. Once the petition has been read into the open minutes of that Lodge, you become the "property" of that Lodge. No Lodge may approach you for membership until your petition is accepted or rejected.. If accepted, your petition will go to an investigative committee. Your character will be examined. The members of this committee are looking for reasons to accept you as a member. This process may take up to a month.
At the next stated business meeting of the Lodge that you have petitioned, your petition will be voted upon after the Investigative Committee reports their findings. On the assumption that you have been accepted, you will be notified by the Lodge when to show up for the ritual. The ritual is composed of 3 symbolic degrees, The Entered Apprentice Degree or First Degree, The Fellow Craft Degree or Second Degree and the Master Mason Degree or Third Degree. There is no higher degree than that of being a Master Mason.
After becoming a Master Mason, you are free to go to other lodges and visit, help with the degree work and even join other Masonic orders such as the York Rite, Scottish Rite, TCL, Shrine, etc.
I hope that this answers some questions about Masonry and if not, please send an e-mail. If I cannot answer your question(s) I will forward to someone that can answer your question(s). Some of my best friends are Brother Master Masons and I would not trade this bond of Brotherly Love and Friendship for anything in the world. And if you are a history buff, you will find that many of the signers of the Declaration of Independence were Masons. In fact, several presidents of the United States have been Masons.