Monday 26 February 2018

Pinterest: What Is it and Why Do I Need It?

By Marilyn Forsyth
Image courtesy of giphy
Interested in a site with millions of images for your inspiration, education and entertainment? Before you dismiss Pinterest as just another social media site that you don’t have time to indulge in, check out this post to see how easy Pinterest is to use and what it can do for you.

I’m a visual person. You can give me written instructions to follow, or orally explain things to me until you’re blue in the face, and I just won’t get it. me a picture or an infographic and I’ll know exactly what’s going on. That’s why I love Pinterest.

Image courtesy of giphy

It’s visual, it’s fascinating, it’s easy to use and it’s lots of fun.

At its most basic, Pinterest is a photo sharing website. But it’s SO MUCH MORE. (Sorry to shout, but you need to understand this!) The site defines itself as "The world’s catalog of ideas. Find and save recipes, parenting hacks, style inspiration and other ideas to try." And that’s just the beginning…

screenshot of one of my boards
Pinterest allows you to either browse images on pin boards created by others, or to create a pin board for whatever interests you. A pin board is a theme-based collection of images. Think of one thing you’re into. Rural romance? Wildlife photography? Home decoration? I guarantee you’ll find at least one pin board on any topic you can name.

I started off with one board but I now have six, four boards related to my writing and two just for fun and inspiration. Inspirational visuals for the time-slip novel I’m working on appear on a ‘secret’ board which only I can see. Here, I keep images of characters, settings, objects, etc, to refer to when I’m writing. I’ll make it public when I’m closer to publication, like I did with my boards for The Farmer’s Perfect Match and Falling in Love Again. (The links take you to my boards.)

Image courtesy of Hotties From History

I love browsing boards with topics that relate to what I’m writing about. When I find an image I like, I save (repin) it to my board (a one-click operation). For example, one of the heroines in my work in progress is a medieval warrior princess so, from related boards, I've repinned photos of things like medieval dress, castle layouts, and maps of ancient Wales.  

Pinterest regularly alerts me to other boards I might be interested in, and also lets me know when someone has repinned one of my images. (Whether you want to interact with others is up to you. I haven’t gone down that road; I just like having access to inspirational images at my fingertips.)

Image courtesy of Pinterest

Once you have a board of your own (too easy to create), there are 3 ways to add images:
1.                  Upload from your computer
2.                  Repin images from any other board
3.                  Pin directly from any web page by adding the ‘Pin It’ button to your browser 

Like I said, it’s all so easy!

Go on, have a go! Click on this link to the Pinterest Home Page. When you get there, click on the 3 horizontal lines in the top right-hand corner of the page to get a list of general topic headings. Or use the search box if you know what you’re looking for.

This site gives a very helpful overview for getting started:

Do you have any Pinterest boards? Let me know in the comments and I'll be sure to follow you.

Love to Love: travelling. We're off to beautiful Wales in a couple of months to do some further research for my time-slip novel.😁

Love to Laugh: It's why I have a 'Fun Stuff' board.
Love to Learn: which friends are on Pinterest. On the Pinterest Facebook page look under Community (on the right-hand side) and you’ll see the names of any friends who use Pinterest.


  1. Very interesting Marilyn. I have a pinterest account as Cassie Samuels suggested it years ago, but it has fallen by the wayside with so many comoeting demands on time. Shall have to add a new page! Thanks!

    1. Hi Alyssa! I've got some more interesting ideas on how authors can use Pinterest in a future post. :)

  2. Love it, Marilyn! I’ve got a couple of boards, one for sheet music and the other I used when looking at bathroom ideas when I was renovating. I had no idea all this fabulous stuff was out there prior to the renovation...! It gave me some great ideas. There is some fun stuff there too. A world worth exploring.

    1. Hi Malvina! I've used it for renovating ideas, too. As you say, it's worth exploring - no matter what you're interested in. The only problem I have with it is spending too much time there ;)

  3. I love pinterest it is so much fun. I have boards for some of my books too and I love checking out other peoples boards. It really is an insight into what a person likes.

    1. I had no idea you used Pinterest for your books, too, Cassie. I'll have to check out your boards. :D

  4. Thanks for such an interesting article, Marilyn. I've never used Pinterest, and had no idea about its possibilities until I read your post.

  5. Hi Sharon! It's so easy, and the possibilities for using it are endless. Be warned, though: it can become addictive. ;)


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