A good first step in learning about your own local snakes is to acquire a field guide for identification (some are listed on our Snaky Books page), then sit down and go through the distribution maps of every species in the book.
List all the species that possibly could occur in your area. Once you have that list, then you can begin learning about each species, and looking for them in the right places, making notes next to each name.
To give you an idea of what such a list could look like, below is the list I made when I lived in southwestern Mississippi.
The species marked with a ? are those for which my location appeared at the very edge of the species' distribution, and I wasn't sure if the species was there or not. The names in red are venomous species.