For me, Pinterest was love at first try. I’m a very visual thinker and often imagine scenes in my head (almost like movies) before even penning the first word so it was a natural fit. How do I use Pinterest? Ah, let me count the ways…
1. For Inspiration. I create a storyboard (or a Pinterest board) for every story I write. Here I collect pictures that trigger characters, place, story themes and ideas. As the board grows, so does my understanding of my story world.
For example, A Tale of Two Djinns is a Romeo & Juliet story pitting earth djinns (genies) against water djinns. My inspiration: nature. So I collected a lot of images of earth and water…as well hero and heroine inspirations. :)
2. As an Ideas File. Anything that catches my interest, I add to my Cool Pictures board. Some of it has triggered stories or scenes, some are just fun to look at…but all of them sparked my interest and I wanted to save them.
3. To Showcase my Stories. Once a story is done and is published (or close), I will take my inspirational board to the next level by adding covers and more details. With my newest release Wildfire, a paranormal mystery set in West Texas, I had a lot of fun adding pictures of landmarks that appear in the story. Later on I also added reviews and buy links.
*Note: The description space under each image gives you an opportunity to add key information to further interest viewers. Use it!
4. For Research. I also create boards based on topics I need to research for different stories. For one story, I needed to know the different parts of a chair…and so there’s a board showing different parts of a chair. Another one is on old, interesting homes and gets quite a few visitors.
5. To Relax. I love to read and cook when I’m not writing. So I have boards about food, books, writing as well as one about places I’d like to travel. When I need a break, I’ll go play on these boards. It works almost like daydreaming and lets my subconscious work out story problems.
6. To Connect with Readers. Not only can visitors to my Pinterest boards learn more about my readers, but they also get a glimpse into what defines me as an author and a person. And, seriously, there’s no better way to connect with another person than over shared interests.
I’ll end with some caveats:
1. There are some copyright issues involving pictures and you should be careful about using images because you could get into trouble. Agent Rachelle Gardner suggests you only post images that include a link back to the source; consider only posting images from websites that include a “Pin It” button; carefully consider whether to use the “Repin” button, and only do it if the pin links back to the original source.
2. Don’t be spammy. A board with only pictures of your book covers is boring. Like on any other social media, hard sell rarely works.
3. Only do Pinterest if you genuinely enjoy it. Again, there are so many social networks out there that you don’t want to spread yourself too thin or make half-hearted attempts.
So do you Pinterest? What are your tips, experience, thoughts regarding Pinterest? If you’d like to check out my Pinterest boards:
Mina Khan is a Texas-based writer and food enthusiast. She writes about djinns (genies), dragons, hunks and whatever else sparks her fancy. She also writes a weekly food column for the San Angelo Standard-Times as Rashda Khan. Originally from Bangladesh, she is now a proud West Texan.
Her first published work, The Djinn's Dilemma, won the novella category of the 2012 Romance Through The Ages (published) contest. A Tale of Two Djinns won the 2013 Readers’ Crown for best paranormal romance.
For more information check out her:
- Blog: Stories by Mina Khan