Pinterest: 13 Things Writers Should Know

PinterestI finally joined Pinterest over the weekend—I have to be honest, I did it for the same reason I do a lot of things these days: because I want to be knowledgeable about what’s going on, and I want to be able to talk intelligently with my authors about things that are important to them. I didn’t go into it thinking it would be for me.

But once I browsed around and created some boards (check them out!), and especially after I read a couple dozen articles on the Internet about Pinterest, I’m sold! I think it can be a tremendous way for authors to interact with their readers… something that’s hard to do through the other social networks where writers tend to connect mostly with other writers. So I gathered a few tidbits of info for you. (After you read this, be sure to click through to my companion post, 10 Tips for Authors Using Pinterest.)

13 Things Writers Should Know About Pinterest

1. No, you don’t have to join Pinterest.

Most of us are way past saturation with social media. BUT… you may actually find Pinterest more enjoyable than Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, even Facebook or blogging. Plus, I think it’s more than just the “flavor of the month” — it has so many advantages that it’s probably here to stay for a while. So I recommend you at least pop in and see what all the fuss is about.

2. Pinterest has a HUGE following.

Traffic on Pinterest has increased over 2700% (yes, nearly three thousand percent) in the last ten months. With over 10 million monthly page views, it’s the fastest growing standalone website in history. Translation: I don’t think we can ignore this one.

 3. People spend significant TIME on Pinterest.

Users spend more time on Pinterest (average of 15 minutes per visit) than they do on Facebook (average of 12 minutes per visit)  or Twitter (3 minutes). And by “people” I mean your potential readers.

 4. Most Pinterest users are women.

Nearly 70% of Pinterest users are women, which is a good thing for those of you wanting to sell books to women. This has, of course, caused some male-oriented clones to pop up, notably Gentlemint and Manteresting.

5. Pinterest users are an advertiser’s dream.

As an author trying to sell books, you’re an advertiser.  So you should know that the demographic of Pinterest users tends to be young (25-44), upper middle class, and female. Those are people who buy things. And many of them read, too.

6. Pinterest drives an incredible amount of traffic. 

Pinterest drives more referral traffic than YouTube, Google+ and LinkedIn, combined. This means if you want people clicking through to the book page on your website, Pinterest may be your best bet. From what I can tell about Pinterest, I believe it might prove to be more effective than any other current social network in driving READERS (not other writers) to your books. However, take note…

7.  Pinterest is NOT meant to be used solely for self-promotion.

Don’t just post your own books. Treat it as a conversation, a way to share things you love and learn about others interests, a place to be inspired and have fun. Avoid “sell” language.

8. Still not convinced? Remember, not everyone is a writer like you.

As a writer, you may be more attuned to words than visuals. You may not be a YouTube fan, and you prefer to read a written blog post rather than watch a vlog. But the rest of the world – your readers – isn’t like you. They enjoy pictures as well as words (or more than words). They’re on Pinterest in huge numbers. Don’t take your own lack of “interest” as a sign that you shouldn’t explore Pinterest.

9. There are still some bugs in the site.

Pinterest seems to have had some technical difficulties and may load slowly during peak times. With its rapid growth, this isn’t surprising, but the folks at Pinterest assure us they’re working on the problem. Don’t let it stop you from looking into it.

10. You need an invitation to join Pinterest. 

But it’s easy to get one. Go to Pinterest.com. You can request an invite by clicking the red button, or, you can ask one of your friends who’s already on Pinterest for an invite.

11. You have to sign in through either Facebook or Twitter.

If you aren’t a member of either of these sites, you won’t be able to join Pinterest. Once you sign up for Pinterest, it will automatically notify other Pinterest users who are your friends on the site through which you signed in. (i.e. I signed up to Pinterest through Facebook, and I noticed that I immediately had many followers. Turned out they were my Facebook friends.)

12. You can keep your images from being pinned.

If you don’t want images from your website to be pinned, Pinterest has a small piece of HTML code that can be added to your page to prevent people pinning your images. (Very relevant for artists and photographers who don’t want their images “stolen.”) Find it on Pinterest’s help page.

13. Yes, there are some potentially serious copyright issues.

In the last couple of weeks, the web has lit up with concern about some pretty serious copyright issues with Pinterest. Their terms of use (without going into the legalese) basically claim they permanently have all rights to the images you post and can sell them or do anything they want with them. This is a huge concern for photographers and visual artists, who can lose all ability to control or profit from their images. More info will undoubtedly come out about this, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Pinterest eventually tweaks their terms of use.

What writers should know: If you “pin” images you find around the web, you may be harming the artist who created the image. I suggest 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. When you’re pinning books and linking back to your site or an online retailer, I don’t think this copyright issue is a concern for you.

 

What are YOUR experiences, tips, and thoughts on using Pinterest?

 

Want to know more about how YOU can use Pinterest? Click to read my post on the Books & Such blog, 10 Tips for Authors Using Pinterest.

 

Notes:

a) Stats are from this article and infographic on Huff Post.

b) There are a lot of great articles on how to use Pinterest; I found this one particularly helpful.

 

 

 

 

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  • http://pinterest.com/juliejarnagin/ Julie Jarnagin

    I love Pinterest. I have a “Novel Inspiration” board with photos of settings and characters. It’s a lot of fun.

  • http://mavieenviolet@blogspot.com Kelsey (Dominique) Ridge

    Thanks for sharing.
    Having just gotten into Pinterst, I can say that it’s a surprisingly interesting way to spend time online. I never thought about myself as a really visual person, but there are some pretty things I just love looking at.

  • http://www.martzbookz.blogspot.com Martha Ramirez

    I LOVE Pinterest!!

    How do you feel about the Pinterest scare? I ended deleting most of my boards (painfully) because I was on the fence. I miss my boards and interacting.

    Was curious what you thought about it. I really would like to pin them up again.

    • Rachelle Gardner

      Um, I think I addressed that in #13. I wouldn’t be advocating writers use it, if I thought it were a serious worry, as long as you’re not pinning things that shouldn’t be pinned.

      • http://www.martzbookz.blogspot.com Martha Ramirez

        Thanks, Rachelle. That’s what I get for reading at 2 a.m. ;)
        Maybe, I just wanted to hear more insight? Either way, great info.

        I’m really glad you posted this. Thank you.

  • http://www.mikaleebyerman.wordpress.com Mikalee Byerman

    After seeing so many of my Facebook friends and Twitter tweeps lauding Pinterest, I decided to join. It took three glasses of wine for me to even understand what it was … at first, my “home” page was covered in half-naked boudoir shots of women (apparently I was “following” someone I shouldn’t have…) and wedding dresses. Given that my blog/future book centers on my crazy divorce, this seemed particularly ironic. Or cruel. Or both. ;)

    The overriding problem: I joined, and others started “following” me. Now I have these followers — yet I have no idea what I’m doing!

    I think I’m looking for some deeper meaning or hidden tricks. I’m looking for nuance, when it really is primarily pretty pictures. And that is all.

    However, as a writer/blogger, I’m also looking for the answer to the question: How can Pinterest help me? Until I figure it out (which may take slightly MORE than three glasses of wine), I guess I’ll just continue to look at pretty pix. And NOT naked boudoir or wedding dress shots, thank you very much…

    :)

    • http://www.melissaknorris.com Melissa K. Norris

      Create boards of things that pertain to you, or as a writer, your target audience.

      If that’s mom’s, create boards with quick healthy dinner recipes, home organization, and fun kid crafts.

      Or repin things that you enjoy, you’re letting people get to know what you like.

      Hope that helps. :)

      • http://www.mikaleebyerman.wordpress.com Mikalee Byerman

        GREAT tips, Melissa — I only wish I had read this before signing up and somehow collecting half-naked pix of random women I didn’t know! I think that initial problem I encountered stemmed from the sign-up process, at which point Pinterest “suggests” people for you to follow as you’re becoming acclimated. Perhaps needless to say, there may have been a few bad recommendations there!

        I’m also looking forward to reading the article Rachelle referenced above. Any tips are appreciated…

        Thank you so much for sharing! :)

        • http://www.melissaknorris.com Melissa K. Norris

          There’s always a learning curve, don’t feel bad. And as long as you didn’t “pin” those pics, then they won’t show up when people look at your profile, so no worries. :)

        • http://theravenslanding.blogspot.com/ Abigail Cossette

          You should be able to unfollow those boards/pinners that Pinterest suggested. That was the most annoying part of the sign up process for me. I had dozens of people to unfollow. I started pinterest strictly for the practical use of keeping track of recipes and gardening articles. It’s a lot of fun.

    • http://www.FaithfulChoices.com Paula

      You can get rid of any boudoir picture. Pinterest wants their subscribers to be the ones to make the call. You can click on any lewd picture and beside it you have the option to “report it”. Pinterest claims to remove these. You can also unfollow anyone who posts these things.

      As to how it could help, one way to build a following is to make people aware of what you do. To do that, you must give something away.

      By pinning your blog posts or enabling others to do that, you share with another group of people. Also, you can click on things with connect with your personal brand as a support to what you already do.

      I’ve begun this process, feel free to check it out. http://pinterest.com/paulawhidden/

    • http://www.transitionslifecoaching.org Theresa Froehlich

      I’ve been keeping Pinterest in the back of my mind for some time. While the rest of the world is jumping on the bandwagon, I yet have to find time to figure out how Pinterest is going to help me.

      If the Pinterest population is mostly in the age bracket 25-44,I have to see if this is the right target population for me. I’m aiming to reach women of empty nest age.

      Does anyone have input for me?

    • http://thepuresacrifice.wordpress.com/ Deanna Wiseburn

      Not really, because behind most of the pictures you can click through to a link to a website on whatever drew you to the pictures. So its not the pointless pictures that it first appears to be. And in the beginning I did not realize that.

  • Rebecca Fields

    I adore Pinterest. It’s so peaceful compared to FaceBook or Twitter. It allows you to see people in a different light. I have boards on there that reflect stories I’m writing – a visual story board, if you will. It’s been very encouraging to see the response. Thanks for posting about this site!

  • http://www.daleharcombe.com Dale Harcombe

    First I’ve not heard of this site before, so thanks Rachelle.I will definitely check it out as that is the market my latest novel Streets on a Map is aimed at.
    Dale
    http://www.daleharcombe.com

  • http://erinshakespear.blogspot.com Erin Shakespear

    I am also a Pinterest-Lover. For me, it’s a great way to keep track of all the recipes, ideas and….stuff I want to without copying it to a word document or printing it out (and then losing it).

    I also have boards where I pin pictures for writing inspiration or ones I think represent the world I’m trying to create in my books. It’s fun to be able to look at them when I’m trying to create a new scene.

    I just checked out (and followed) your boards. Fun!

    • http://www.laurenmillerbooks.com Lauren Miller

      To Rachelle G. – thank you for posting this blog entry about Pinterest. I recently have become an addict (erm, devoted user) of this site and find it’s great for keeping track of online images and such.

      To Cathy W. – I love the idea that you have boards for the Vietnam era. I haven’t considered using the boards to delineate a time period but I like the concept. If someone was a historical writer, I could see having a whole nostalgic-themed board or boards for the clothing, homes, etc.

      To Connie A and Erin S. – love the idea of using the boards for writing inspiration. I’ve got 1 board right now for “Writing Inspiration” myself and use it for anything I stumble upon on Pinterest that strikes my muse as “something” I might be able to use for inspiration in my writing later on. There’s definitely a lot to be argued for using Pinterest for research but it might also be a time-evaporator-machine that was sent by aliens to interrupt and distract me from my mission of writing. Still working on that.

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  • http://www.gabrielle-meyer.blogspot.com Gabrielle Meyer

    Thank you for these tips and your insight. I love having a space to keep my online images organized. I also enjoy finding other people who have like interests as me, and seeing what they have found online that I haven’t. It took me a few months to really figure out how to use Pinterest for my own benefit, but now that I have it figured out, I am having a blast!

  • http://www.belindapollard.com Belinda Pollard

    My first response was: Groan. Not another social media thingy for me to keep up with.

    But you’ve inspired me to think about it. I can see the potential, after reading this post. Thank you.

    • http://www.4broadminds.blogspot.com/ carol brill

      ditto on grown…and ditto, I am inspired to check it out thanks Rachalle

      • http://www.4broadminds.blogspot.com/ carol brill

        oops sorry for typo Rachelle

  • http://www.marcykate.com MarcyKate

    I like the theory of Pinterest and think it’s pretty, but I don’t see myself using it and honestly, it’s because of the potential issues. Not just the one mentioned above about Pinterest being able to do what they want with your images, but the part in their terms of service that essentially says if they get into trouble for copyright infringement, the people pinning those images agree to take the blame. I’ve seen a couple articles about it, and there’s a good one here written by a lawyer: http://www.businessinsider.com/pinterest-copyright-issues-lawyer-2012-2

    It’s neat idea, and it’ll be interesting to see how it pans out. If they changed their TOS, I’d be much more likely to use it.

    • Rachelle Gardner

      Believe me, I OD’d on reading those lawyer articles over the last week. However, I still can’t see how that would affect me if I’m only pinning book covers, or other things where the image-owner has authorized pinning. That’s why I think Pinterest is still a potentially positive tool for writers.

      • Robert Lynch

        Every one of my pins links directly to the website from which I have pinned. To my thinking, the owners of those sites would be thrilled for the exposure that this provides. When my books are published, I hope that others will pin, and link, for me. I think it’s a wonderful concept.

  • http://www.catherinejwest.com Cathy West

    The best explanation I’ve heard about how writers can best utilize Pinterest is that we need to look at it as a way of sharing a bit of our lives with our readers in a safe environment. That’s often my struggle with Facebook and having a ton of FB friends that I don’t really know…sometimes things get posted on my page that I don’t want the whole world knowing about. Pinterest is different because I control what boards I create and who can post to them. I pin things that are relevant to me, things I think others might enjoy as well. I didn’t join thinking it would be a great way to advertise my book. But I watched what other authors were doing and they have some great ideas. One thing I did was create a board with a lot of photos from the Vietnam era that inspired me as I was writing Yesterday’s Tomorrow. It’s neat to see them all in one place and it’s also very gratifying to me when Pinterest friends share those images. I promote my fellow authors on my Books Worth Reading board, I have Bermuda board so folks can see the beautiful island I live on, but mostly I use Pinterest to relax and have fun. Never to procrastinate. Never. Not me…

  • http://sherrindak.blogspot.com Sherrinda

    I love Pinterest and have found great recipes on it. I use it for DIY stuff I want to try and for gathering novel settings and character templates.

    I hate the thought of Pinterest becoming a place for marketing. As with anything on the web, that is usually what happens. I’ve been running across pins from etsy marketing their wares. I just unfollow them.

    I do like the thought of interacting with authors on Pinterest. I follow Jody Hedlund and love so see what she is pinning. It is a way to see her likes and feel like I am getting to “know” her some. It’s a great way for authors to interact with their readers!

  • http://kathrynmagendie.wordpress.com kathryn magendie

    I’ve just joined,as well. I’m so “hyper-aware” of copyright issues, I haven’t pinned much yet, but, I can so see the appeal!

    I was able to upload my “book trailer” videos (and other videos I like) on there, too – and that was fun.

    They’ll iron out the bugs and it’ll be a wonderful visual community!

    • http://www.snowtography.blogspot.com Julie

      You may have seen this already from Social Media Today…I share your copyright concerns.

      http://socialmediatoday.com/deborah-sweeney/457517/pinning-copyright-complaints-pinterest

      • http://kathrynmagendie.wordpress.com kathryn magendie

        Thank you for the link! I’ll check that out.

        It would be so easy for an image to be pinned and re-pinned and pinned and repinned, while the owner of the image has no idea, or finds out later and Is Not Happy. I am so careful, but it does limit what I pin.

  • http://infinitecharacters.com/ Connie Almony

    I have really enjoyed Pinterest so far. I have created boards for my two WIPs and my blogs as well as things I just like. I connected with another writer who is now helping me with a Military Ministry series I’m working on for my individual blog. The timing couldn’t have been better.

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  • http://hmallon-ftheeiwasateenagequaker.blogspot.com/ Helen W. Mallon

    Rachelle, thanks for the intro. For now, I am a lurker, but I’m potentially very interested.

  • http://marlataviano.com Marla Taviano

    I joined Pinterest a few months ago and recently deleted my account. It was a very personal decision and doesn’t make much sense professionally, but I knew it was what I was supposed to do.

    My reasons:

    1. It was yet another time suck taking me away from my real life peeps.

    2. It was a constant reminder of how many people I will never measure up to in awesomeness.

    3. I was in it for all the wrong reasons. To get people to notice ME.

    4. I’m trying to simplify my life, and it completely overwhelmed me.

  • http://www.snowtography.blogspot.com Julie

    I have a hard time finding the time to read and write as much as I need to so the one thing I don’t need is another time sucker. :) I looked at a page or two but I have to draw the line somewhere in order to have time to practice guitar, read, write, and take care of house and hearth!

    Interesting article on Social Media Today about Pinterest and copyright:
    http://socialmediatoday.com/deborah-sweeney/457517/pinning-copyright-complaints-pinterest

  • http://zherlios.blogspot.com/ Bill Wolfe

    Thanks for this article, Rachelle. As you said, I feel a little oversaturated with social media – particularly when it’s all time better spent editing, revising and writing – but you made some good points for consideration. I’ll likely check it out.

    Thanks again. :-)

  • Else

    There’s a lot of pressure on writers to do all this social media stuff, isn’t there? But it seems like such a time-sucker.

    I’ve dabbled in a bit of on-line promotion and networking and never noticed much effect, going by the ol’ amazon sales rank. Then one day one of my books got reviewed in the Washington Post. Wow. *That* sent the amazon sales rank soaring.

    Funny thing was this surge happened after the Sunday print edition of the Post came out, rather than after the online publication which was up the day before.

    Old media still has a few signs of life in it yet. Of course the review in the Post was sheer luck and, unlike social media, I had no control over it happening.

  • http://vinobaby.blogspot.com Kerry Ann (aka vinobaby)

    I am a total pinterest addict. There. I’ve admitted it. In addition to finding recipes, fashion tips, and cool products, I’ve also started boards with inspiration for my novel in progress and a general “slush pile” of inspiration.

    I love it!

    http://pinterest.com/vinobaby/

  • Jeanne T

    This was an eye-opening post for me. I appreciate how you did your research about this before posting about Pinterest. I especially appreciate the time you took to study up on legal ramifications. Thanks for giving me a broader perspective about Pinterest.

    I have avoided Pinterest because I feared I’d get too “into it,” and it would suck a lot of my time away. After reading this, though, I can see some definite advantages to joining Pinterest. Now, to make sure I’ll practice discipline when I join. :)

    • http://thepuresacrifice.wordpress.com/ Deanna Wiseburn

      It is a definite time waster. When I first got on it I lost hours nightly. It takes discipline to do it.

  • Amy Ritscher

    I use Pinterest as an idea board. I do not have a “following” per say since this is my first novel, but I thought it would be a fun way to share my ideas with my friends so they could get more of a picture of my story while I work on it.

    As for copyright issues, I only post commercial-type pictures whose referral would benefit them. I don’t post personal photos, other people’s writing (unless it refers people to their blog), or anything that that could mistakenly be construed as my own work.

  • http://www.robynbradley.com/ Robyn Bradley

    I’ve quickly become a Pinterest junkie, too! And I agree — I think there are lots of fun boards that we writers can create to help promote who we are and our work, but in a fun, subtle way.

    For example, I’ve created a board around the protag in my novel — what she would wear, listen to, etc. I’ve also created a board around the fictional town in my novel.

    I think the key is diversity in our boards — I also have a recipes board and an “All the men I’ve loved before” board for my favorite actors. :)

    Here are some great articles for pinner newbies — I found these especially helpful when I started:

    Mashable – Pinterest Beginner’s Guide

    The Ultimate Guide to Mastering Pinterest for Marketing

  • http://www.burgandyice.blogspot.com Burgandy Ice

    Love it!! There are a lot of artist pix up, but that does make me nervous for copyrighting. My favorite part is how the pictures link back to wherever they came from so I can find the review or recipe or tip or trick or AUTHOR!! :-) Love it.

  • http://blog.rumorsofglory.com/ Lucille Zimmerman

    I wrote an article about this last week. Hope it’s okay to post here and hope it’s helpful to some. I has lots of links and examples.
    http://wordservewatercooler.com/2012/02/28/pinterest-for-writers-and-bloggers/

  • http://blog.rumorsofglory.com/ Lucille Zimmerman

    I wrote about this last week. Hope you don’t mind if I share the link. I have lots of links and examples:

    http://wordservewatercooler.com/2012/02/28/pinterest-for-writers-and-bloggers/

    • http://nataliesharpston.com/ Natalie Sharpston

      Lucinda’s article was so helpful and informative – I reblogged it. :)

  • http://www.paigekellerman.com Paige Kellerman

    I’ve been using it for a while and love it. I almost did a back flip when someone pinned a blog post mine, without being bribed. Joy! I’ve found it’s a fantastic way to connect with writers and readers on a personal/sharing interests type of level. Hope it’s here to stay for the long haul.

  • http://www.prudencemacleod.com/ Prudence MacLeod

    I took my Pinterest profile down. I loved Pinterest and was really enjoying it, but a closer look at the terms of service turned me off. I’m just not willing to accept responsibility for what they might do, neither am I willing to pay their court costs should the get sued. It’s a great idea, but far too risky.

  • http://www.serenitybohon.com Serenity Bohon

    Thanks for the tips about copyright (to make sure the image links to the original source). I really love Pinterest and was disappointed to hear there might be legal issues with it. I’ve just looked over my pins and occasionally I did “Pin It”, as the button says in my toolbar, directly from Google Images instead of from the site it was posted on. I’ve tried to correct that now. I saw a quote once, “If you think women aren’t visual, you haven’t seen Pinterest.” It’s so true. I am loving having so many inspiring images at my fingertips like that!

  • http://www.writinginflow.blogspot.com Beverly Diehl

    Loving my Pinterest. My most popular board, for odd some reason, is: Scrumptious Men, to which I Pin pictures of men I find… inspirational for my writing. I also created a board of Ugly holiday sweaters, as I was writing a chapter in which my characters attended such a party; it was helpful to “dress” them in various outfits as I wrote.

    I do avoid following the food porn boards, though, because I don’t need further stimulation in THAT department.

  • http://www.ProjectJennifer.com Jennifer Minar-Jaynes

    Just joined a few days ago after finding out that my novel was being “liked” and “re-pinned.” I have to say that it’s ADDICTIVE.

    I look forward to seeing how things fare with the referral traffic. Right now, StumbleUpon generates most of it.

    Thanks for the great post. I’ll share it on my writer’s blog.

    In health & happiness,
    Jennifer

  • http://leigh-covington.blogspot.com Leigh Covington

    Glad you jumped on the Pinterest bandwagon. I love that sight. I never thought of it as a tool in this way so I love your tips!

  • http://jennifertanner.info Jennifer Tanner

    Hi Rachelle!

    I joined Pinterest last month. I know some say it’s a time suck, but I find that it’s quite handy for recipes, decor ideas and pics of things I collect. I blogged about it today as well and linked your last blog along with two other interesting articles about the site. Have a great day!

  • http://babblefromtheburbs.blogspot.com/ Kathryn Elliott

    I’ve been poking around on Pinterest, now I just need a block of free time and my 15 year old to show me how to use it.

  • http://www.rachellewrites.blogspot.com Rachelle Christensen

    I joined about 2 weeks ago and holy cow, it’s awesome! :) I’m usually reluctant to join these types of site because I don’t want to waste time, but this has so many advantages. I already have several boards, but one of my favorite in progress is for my current series. I’m posting pics to represent the book and help me with details/description.
    Thanks for the great tips!

  • http://www.artesianministries.org Donna Pyle

    Like you, I joined Pinterest to see for myself what all the stir was about. I needed another social media outlet like I needed a hole in the head. However, I found myself sold, as well. I created a variety of boards, only adding 3 boards which actually relate to writing, the writing life, or what I’ve written. It’s truly a socially interactive place that allows us to glimpse into what another person enjoys.

    It took me completely by surprise when, within two weeks, dozens of people followed the link back to my website and began ordering Bible studies. I honestly didn’t expect that level of immediate response. It provided solid proof that Pinterest provides a whole new group of friends — and readers. Thanks for these great tips!

  • http://joylenenowellbutler.com joylene

    We’re moving, and I’m having a blast collecting ideas for bedroom, livingroom, bathrooms. I spend far too much time pinning, but if I’m having fun…?

    Here’s another article that you might find interesting, Rachelle:

    http://www.crafttestdummies.com/craft-product-reviews/the-perils-of-pinterest/#comment-31707

  • http://www.dorinewhite.blogspot.com Dorine White

    I just joined Pinterest this weekend after hearing about it at a writer’s conference. I’m excited to start pinning.

  • http://www.michaelinfinito.com Otin

    Very Pinteresting….lol

  • Elle Blair

    My BFF has been trying to get me interested in Pinterest for months. This article sold it for me. Absolutely LOVE the idea of having a “Novel Inspiration” board.

    Thanks, Rachelle.

  • http://www.josephjpote.com Joe Pote

    Okay, I like your Pinterest boards, Rachelle…mostly because they look relatively simple to do, and like something I could easily imitate with my own reading preferences.

    You’ve dropped the intimidation factor a notch for me…and I’m accepting the fact that Pinterest will be around awhile.

    Still a bit intimidated at the idea of having to learn and interact in yet another social media format…

    Thanks for the pointers!

    • http://www.josephjpote.com Joe Pote

      As a side note…I just scrolled back up and realized that the demographics on responses to this post are about the same as for Pinterest membership.

      Apparently I’m not the only guy feeling a bit intimidated… ;-)

  • http://thoughtsthatmove.blogspot.com/ Wendy Paine Miller

    Love it!

    Shows how I awake I was this morning, I commented over at Books & Such thinking I was here. Glad I did, but I’m also glad to have read this too.

    Drinking coffee. I’ll be fine. ;)
    ~ Wendy

  • http://www.emmacunningham.ca Emma Cunningham

    I guess this means I should join too, then… I’ve been putting it off since it’s one more platform to manage, but I don’t think I should wait much longer.

  • http://www.terimetts.com Teri Metts

    Rachelle, Thanks for this post. I’ve been weighing the pros and cons of getting on Pinterest. One minute I think I’ll go for it, and the next I’m not sure. I’m still uncertain, but your insight has been helpful. I’ve thought of Pinterest mostly about recipes and crafty ideas (what most of my friends like), but after viewing your boards, I see it can be something that would interest me too.

  • http://rachelwilder.net Rachel Wilder

    I do use Pinterest, in a very unique way it seems. Kaye Dacus inspired the way I use my boards.

    I write historical romance and have a thing for 19th century fashion. I’m also the go-to person for all my published friends when it comes to 19th century fashion questions because I’ve worn it and made it.

    My boards are divided by decade and I pin dresses, shoes, hats, jewelry and fans. I keep popping up in writer blog posts with suggestions on how to use it. The funny part is I’m not actively promoting the boards right now or trying to get followers. I have many followers I’ve never heard of, along with a bunch of writers who follow the boards.

    I don’t spend a lot of time cruising boards and categories though. That’s not my purpose with it right now.

  • http://mylife-in-stories.blogspot.com My Life. One Story at a Time.

    I love Pinterest. I love being able to use it as sort of bookmark for a lot of site I visit. I like to pin things to my “boards” for future use. I’ve gone wild. It’s like having bulletin boards for inspiration all around my room, but on the computer. I am actively promoting my blog on it, but followers are coming in by the droves, which is great.

  • Courtney Hannigan

    I also have Pinterest and have been using it for a couple of months now! Its is very addicting and inspirational. One thing I discovered about it was that over time things could get messy. I ended up with 50+ boards and it was just too complicated to sort through. I read a blog about another site called clipix. I tried them out and it gave the Pinterest feel with what I like to call “my personal twist”. More privacy settings, organizational options and much more.. I love it!

  • http://kristinlaughtin.blogspot.com Kristin Laughtin

    I’ve only briefly looked at the site–a friend is using it to coordinate ideas for her wedding–and I’m curious how someone would rate it vs. Tumblr, especially in terms of promotion. I do use Tumblr a little bit for fun right now, and like the ability to post and reblog a variety of things (images, video, text, etc.). Anyone using it for writing stuff, or have enough of an idea of both Tumblr and Pinterest to compare them?

    • http://www.stephanie-mcgee.com Stephanie

      To me, Tumblr is sort of in-between Twitter and Blogger. It feels more micro-blogging than Blogger but less so than Twitter. I’m setting up my Tumblr as a corollary to my books. It’s linked from my main blog, which is currently all about writing, but on my Tumblr I’m allowed to post anything that sparks my imagination. That was the rule I set up for myself so I don’t paint myself into a corner.

      Pinterest is basically a way of organizing the internet. If you use StumbleUpon with the built-in browser toolbar rather than the framed site, you can pin the things you find there for easy reference in the future. I repin recipes for future use, creating a collection for the eventual day I’m on my own again and needing to cook for myself. And I set up several other boards for random things that strike my fancy, like movies, art, books, and jewelry/fashion. To me, Pinterest is a giant organization tool with potential for marketing while Tumblr and blogger seem like they’re more successful when they’re focused.

      One thing I have noticed about Pinterest is that you can choose to follow a user’s entire set of boards or pick and choose which boards you follow. I have people who only follow my food board or only follow my “pretties” board (the one I use for fashion and jewelry) and I have followers who follow every board I have created.

  • http://www.fulfilling-dreams.com Gwen

    I noticed you joined. I’m a recent member too, it’s great to help brain storm stories with.

  • http://www.stephanie-mcgee.com Stephanie

    I’m on Pinterest (stephmwrites) but when I requested my invite and set up my account, I intentionally made it about more than my writing. I’m not published yet and while it’s nice to have all my image inspirations in one place, I wanted one social media outlet that wasn’t set up solely for future publication and marketing. I don’t spend much time on it, or on Tumblr or my Blogger blog, or twitter, but the time I spend on Pinterest is more my own than the time I spend on all those other sites. And it feels very refreshing.

  • http://spirituality.peterdehaan.name/ Peter DeHaan

    In response to a prior blog post lauding the value of Pinterest for writers, I begged for an invite and dove in.

    I played around a bit, got frustrated for what it wouldn’t do, and after spending too much time on it, gave up.

    I still don’t have a compelling comprehension of how it can help me connect with readers.

    I do wonder if the stellar usage numbers it is amassing are more the result of its novelty and of people’s learning curve, then indicative its connectivity value.

    Regardless, I will maintain my account and hope that one day I will “get” it.

    • Rachelle Gardner

      Peter, I applaud your teachable spirit and persistence! I’m the same way… I don’t “get” all these social networks but I’m plodding my way through hoping they’ll begin to make sense to me.

  • http://caitlinrother.com Caitlin Rother

    I’m not sure that most photos can be pinned without violating copyright law. I’ve tried to use photos labelled “stock” or a promotional ad photo that is meant to be used for advertising, but I’m scared to get in trouble so I stopped pinning…

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  • http://nataliesharpston.com/ Natalie Sharpston

    In just the past few days, I started posting a few of my favorite quotes to Pinterest using some simple, minimalist typography.

    http://pinterest.com/nsharpston/wisdom-squared/

    It was surprising how many “repins” and “likes” I received – just for three pieces. The first pin led to a brief increase in traffic to my blog – but I didn’t get the same response for the last two pins. It’s an interesting experiment… I’m smitten…

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  • Patti Mallett

    Thanks, Rachelle. This post has (almost) pushed me over the edge of “maybe I should check that place out.” Gravity will probably take me the rest of the way.

  • Alicia

    I was leery of joining Pinterest at first. But then I broke down and did it. I’m totally addicted now. It’s sooo much better than FB. And you if you don’t want to follow everything on one person’s page (like all the pics of their kids, etc.) you can just select the things you are interested in. Love IT! Also, I can save all the blog posts I might want to reference later into a folder. So great!

  • http://4ambassadorsofchrist.blogspot.com/ Jarm Del Boccio

    How timely…I was just introduced to Pinterest on Sunday, and wondered how I could use it! I will check your links right away….

  • http://siripaulson.wordpress.com Siri Paulson

    Like Stephanie above, I’m using Pinterest more for personal things than for promotion. It’s been very freeing to run around and pin home decor ideas, style ideas, wedding ideas, travel photos, etc., without being in the promo & marketing mindset like I am elsewhere. Plus I’m connecting with more non-writers that way. I do have some writing-related boards, but they’re not the ones that tend to get repinned.

    Maybe eventually I’ll start targeting my pins more to the specific audience I’m trying to build, or working harder to connect them to my blog. Or maybe I won’t. :)

    http://pinterest.com/siripaulson

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  • Ross Smith

    I just adore Pinterest. It is really very interesting and helpful compared to other contemporary sites. That’s one of the reasons http://pinfaves.com was launched – as a way for the community to vote up and down the latest and greatest things.

  • http://forloveorfunny.com Lynn Kellan

    Hi Rachelle,
    A fellow writer pointed me to your blog, and I’m finding it so helpful. I did Pin a few images from my own site, but I’ve grown wary of using Pinterest due to the copyright issues. I’m anxious to learn more about protecting my own copyrights when I use Pinterest.

  • http://thekoalabearwriter.blogspot.com Bonnie Way

    I finally joined Pinterest a couple weeks ago, because several friends were using it and it looked like fun. It IS fun, as nearly everyone else is saying. I’ve seen some great ideas for using Pinterest, from everything to home decorating to recipe collecting to lists of books to read. I think some people have gotten overly concerned about the legality of Pinterest, but I will be careful about what I pin.

  • http://www.dutchessabroad.com Judith van Praag

    Rachelle,
    Pinterest is in the air ;-) Thanks for sharing your observations. In response to a copyright square that was doing the rounds recently I published a post To Pin or not to (Show) Pinterest on that issue.
    Your Number #12 is particularly interesting in regards to artists protecting their assets.
    Thanks for the heads up!
    See you at Pinterest?
    Judith

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    I’m putting up some boards for my creative writing course participants – pictures that can be used as writing prompts, nuggets of wisdom about writing.

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  • http://jessdoesstuff.blogspot.com Jessica Peter

    I’m an obsessive Pinner! I started the pinning just for me, as I have way too many bookmarks and loved that I could visually organize them. I have nearly 60 boards. But then somewhere along the way I accumulated a good deal of followers.

    I’ve definitely connected Pinterest to my crafty life (easy on Pinterest!), but not my writing life. Maybe I should figure out how. . .

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  • http://www.orangemangrove.co.uk James D. Layton

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  • http://www.selfpublishbible.com Lorna Dounaeva

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