I have recently started to use Pinterest after reading a brief e-book about using it to help promote your business. It’s especially good if you make a product, but it can still be useful for others–including writers.
I started out by adding pictures of writers’ retreats, offices, and bookcases of awesomeness. I highlighted a few of my favorite pics in a post, but it’s easier to put all of them on Pinterest. Now I can keep all of them in one spot for inspiration, plus easily share them with others.
(BTW, if you find yourself sucked into using Pinterest (as I’ve been!), do a Google search for “Pinterest browser add ons.” I added one to Firefox and now I just right-click on a pic and send it to the board of my choice. Much faster and easier than going into Pinterest and copying and pasting the URL.)
Joel Comm points out that it’s also a great way to organize research. What did I do with that map of Prague? I have no idea. Did I save a link somewhere? No idea. Now, no more of that: pin that bad boy to a board just for my Flames of Prague novel. Much easier than copying and pasting pictures into a Word document (which is what I was doing for some of my stuff!).
I was just looking at old book covers from the 40’s and 50’s and getting inspired to write a story to fit such a cover. I can pin those pictures to a board to serve as a starting point for that idea.
Have trouble coming up with character descriptions? Whenever you run across a picture of a real person that interests you, pin it. It’s a lot easier to describe someone while you’re looking at them rather than making them up in your head. Likewise with buildings and landscapes.
Ideas and Creative Collaboration
When it comes to creating a book cover, I compile a number of pictures before I decide which one I want. Again, Pinterest becomes the place where I can do that because it’s accessible from everywhere. (I can also take comments from my readers on which picture(s) they like better). And I can pin book covers by other authors that I might want to emulate (i.e. Photoshop inspiration).
If I was anything like an artist (alas, drawing is not my forte… as you might have guessed by my stick-figure drawings), I could put up drawings of all of my characters from Acceptance. But, barring that, I can pin up fan art (um… when I have some).
I can also pin pictures which might be of interest to my fans, such as pictures from the cities where my characters travel, real-life buildings that served as the inspiration for the fictional buildings, area maps, etc. For my historical novels, I can also share tidbits of history that relate to the time and place where the book is set.