No writer ever likes to hear the phrase, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” We’ll take the words, thank you all the same. So how do you even start to use a visually-oriented medium like Pinterest as a tool for your writing and your self-promotion? Let’s look at a few ideas, with the caveat that I’m still learning myself.
If you’re stuck, hit up the Pinterest search bar. Start by searching for stream-of-consciousness terms related to your work. I underwent this process for my current novel, In the Twist, and it helped make my world even more alive to me. In the case of In the Twist, I searched for everything from foggy forest scenes to medieval swords to angel wings to exorcism paraphernalia.
When I see the settings and the props for my world come to life, it fills me with glee and renewed purpose. It reassures me that readers are making visual sense out of what I’m describing, that they’re seeing what I want them to see.
What’s more, the process of creating moodboards can make you reconsider your writing. I have a background in Classical Studies, and one of the characters from another novel I’m writing is of ancient Egyptian origin. Delving around to find an image that was close to what I had in my mind’s eye, I came upon pictures of the Afar people of Ethiopia, thought by many to be descendants of the ancient Egyptians. A particular photo of a young man caught my eye, and suddenly my main character, a 3,000 year old vampire, became someone else entirely. Now, I’m writing a PoC vampire, which is a chronically underserved niche.
Who knows where delving through Pinterest will lead your imagination?
Quotes from You
You have snark. You have wisdom. You have an awesome sense of humor. You’re a writer, after all! Take pithy sayings and turn them into graphics to create a Quotes board on Pinterest. Quotes are hugely popular, and can be a great way to get your perspective out there.
How do you create a great-looking text quote? Let me introduce you to my best friend, Canva. Canva is an online design tool that has pre-formatted sizes for Pinterest, Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook and TONS more. You can even design your book cover there. If you use your own images or their free components, you pay nothing. If you decide to use one of their stock images, it’s only a $1.
Here’s a quote I created using Canva, that’s hosted on my Pinterest ‘Writerliness‘ board.
PROTIP: Don’t forget that image sizes that work on Pinterest do NOT work on Twitter. Every time you create an image you want to pin, go back to Canva and make a second graphic with the same content, sized using their Twitter template. Here’s the difference:
And don’t forget to attribute the quote to yourself in the image!
Tease Your Fiction
Nothing gets us worked up as authors like someone hearing a snippet of our story and loving it. A little love goes a long, long way, right? That’s why I use a Pinterest board to tease my work. A quick phrase or quote here or there, framed in an attractive package, and your words are out there for everyone to see.
Another PROTIP: Use popular search terms in the description text of your quote posts. That will help people looking for, in the above example, a romantic quote, find what you’re putting out on the platform.
Pinterest can be an invaluable tool for helping you to both reignite your passion for your writing and to introduce others to your vision.