Playing with Pinterest

Nancy J. Cohen

Pinterest might be the third most popular social network after Facebook and Twitter. It’s an online pin board where you post photos along with a description. The photos link back to the source. Go here to set up a free account:

To find people you know, go to your friends’ sites and search through their followers. Follow any familiar names. Or on the left, click on Find Friends or Invite Friends to Pinterest. If you don’t see these features, click on the gear shift arrow in the upper right corner and then on Find Friends.

Go here to Follow me:



To gain followers, follow other people’s boards and repin their photos. If you click on the little heart by the photo, it means you Like their photo. Clicking on a photo brings up a comment box.

Create your boards. Suggestions for topics can include My Books, Books by Friends, Coming Next (your WIP), Favorite Places, The Writing Life, Book Tours, Books I’ve Read, Food, Hobbies, Travels, Crafts. Browse by Category to get ideas. On the right of the search bar, click on the arrow beside the three lines. A category list will pop up. Or see what your favorite authors feature and copy their topics.


I like to do storyboards for my books. Check out my boards, and you’ll see what I mean. This is a fun activity. It gives me and my fans a visual reference for my books. I’ll use some of the same photos I buy from royalty free sites for my video trailers and mix them with photos I’ve taken personally or that others have pinned.


To get to your Boards, click on your name in the upper right corner. Find the Board you want to change and click Edit. Here you can add a description to the board.

To access the photos, double click on a board. You can add a pin to this board or edit the photos that are there. When you add a pin, you can also post it to Facebook or Twitter. Click on the pencil on the upper right corner of a pin to edit. If you upload your own photo, go in and edit it to add a description and website link. When you want to post your own book cover, do it from an online bookstore so the source leads back there.

Get the PinIt badge to put on your toolbar. Use it to pin photos from around the Web. On the right of the search bar in Pinterest, click on the arrow beside the three lines. Choose About, and then Browser Button. Also make sure the photos on your sites are pinnable by having the Pinterest share option appear on each post or website page. Get Share buttons at or

Caution: Do not pin copyrighted material. Make sure the source is listed. Upload your own photos or Repin someone else’s, or buy royalty free images. If in doubt, refrain from pinning.

Manage your pins if you wish on Tailwind:

Pinterest can be fun once you start playing with images. It can also be so much fun looking at the pictures on display that you lose all sense of time. So be sure to do your workload for the day first, and plug in Pinterest along with your other social networking. I hope to see you there!

17 thoughts on “Playing with Pinterest

  1. Thanks, Nancy. I’ve wanted to try out Pinterest, now I’ve got your clear tutorial to do so.

  2. Thanks, Nancy. I have been on Pinterst for awhile, but with your tutorial I’ll be able to get more out of it now!

  3. I’ve always used Pinterest as my escape place and to share content I liked. It was only recently that I realized its power. With that in mind I now need to change the way I pin. Do you know how to rearrange the placement of pins? Such as, if I have something pinned under “inspiration” and I want to move it to “writing tips”, is there a way to do that, or do I have to repin?

  4. I use Pinterest a lot for various enthusiasms and projects such as interior design, vintage jewelry, etc. I haven’t used it much for book-related topics–not quite sure it works as well for that.

    • Crafts are really popular on Pinterest as are recipes. It can work for authors because we show our interests as a person to our fans and we can have vision boards for our books. We can also showcase our friend’s titles or related themes.

  5. I love your detailed, very helpful instructions, Nancy! If/when I have time, I’ll definitely come back here for a refresher on how to do it! Thanks for this. 🙂

  6. I love Pinterest. I have over 80 boards. I break things down a lot.

    Everything from “Food: Cakes” to “Writing: The DJ Universe” goes on my boards. I use the writing boards to pin pictures of actors who inspire the design of the characters, locations that inspire the story and other things.

    The DJ board deals in my urban fantasy PI series, about DJ Admire. It has everything from pictures of Tommy Flanagan (her boyfriend) and Idris Elba (a combat mage leader) and David Krummholz (a lycanthropiccollege lit professor) to the apartment building where my PI lives to the motorcycle the head of the local combat mage unit rides and demons DJ has tangled with.

    I also use it for knitting and crochet patterns, recipes, religious items and tracking my reading and movie viewing.

    • What is your Pinterest page link, Angelia? Those sound like some interesting boards to follow. Wow, over 80 of them! When do you get any writing done?

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