Saturday, February 15, 2014

Why Writers Should Use Pinterest

by Michelle Griep

I was a Pinterest rebel. Friends and family members raved about the site, sending me countless invitations. I ignored them all, mostly because I really didn’t understand it. What was the point? I didn’t have a bulletin board growing up, why have a virtual one now?

But the You’ve-Got-To-Join-Pinterest crowd just wouldn’t let up. So, in a moment of complete I’ll-Show-You angst, I joined to prove everyone was wrong. I’d show the entire world that Pinterest is a colossal waste of time.

Wow. What an idiot.

Turns out this site is popular for a reason…it’s totally addicting! Hold on. Before you squawk about how you can’t even find enough time to do laundry let alone add pinning on your To Do list, listen up. Pinterest is an absolutely essential tool, especially for a writer.

Top 3 Writerly Ways to Use Pinterest

Characters. Settings. Pinterest is a wealth of inspiration. Pictures really do paint a thousand words, so next time you’re struggling to meet your word count goal for the day, perusing a few hero or heroine boards just might prod your sluggish plot into action.

Pinnable artwork using quotes from your novel are a great way to generate interest in your book. Oh, you’re not a graphic designer? No worries. There are plenty of free sites to make your own cyber-posters. Poster My Wall is fantastic, as is Photofunia.

If you’ve got beta readers or critique buddies, you can create a board for your story that they can have access to. Working together, you can spit shine your manuscript. Example: My fellow author, Kelly Klepfer, and I are in the midst of deciding what our characters look like for a book we’re co-authoring. We pin pictures, trying to hone our characters to a fine sheen. Currently we’re trying to figure out what our detective should look like. Here’s the board.

Think of Pinterest as a monkey wrench. It’s just one more tool to craft your Great American Novel. But don’t take my word for it. Go ahead. Prove me wrong.

Michelle Griep’s been writing since she first discovered blank wall space and Crayolas...professionally, however, for the past 10 years. 

Her recent release is A HEART DECEIVED, a gothic regency put out by David C. Cook (June 2013). 

If you’d like to keep up with her escapades, you can find her at or or feel free to stalk her on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest.


Ane Mulligan said...

You know, I had a Pinterest account, then I cancelled it, concerned about the legal aspect. However, I've been reconsidering. The idea that I can keep some boards private or just for my crit partners, like Genghis Griep, makes it more useable. I may be back.

Lori Benton said...

Pinterest is great research tool. Along with general 18th century boards on lifestyle and clothing, I create novel boards, keeping them secret until shortly before a release date, then gradually building them in public with non spoiler pins at first. It's very handy when it comes time for my cover designer to do his magic. If he asks about period clothing or setting, I'm ready to answer with the perfect visuals.

Michelle Griep said... can even have secret boards that NO ONE ever has to see.

Michelle Griep said...

18th century? I'll have to toodle over there and check out your boards, Lori!

Heather Day Gilbert said...

Totally agree, Michelle. Pinterest has saved me from ripping out magazine pages and shoving them in a folder for character inspiration--so much easier to pin it from almost any site I'm on. And for indies, it's wonderful, b/c you can pin stock art ideas and work w/your cover designer on SECRET boards, so readers don't know all your devious plans...grin.