Pinterest as a Writing Tool

by Cassidy Eubanks

Pinterest: A popular place to compile recipes (Easy French Macaron: pinned to “Yummm” board), DIY projects (DIY: Tank Tops (Muscle Tees): pinned to “Useful” board), and wedding plans (Lord of the Rings Inspired Wedding Day, pinned to “Autumn Wedding” board). But today we’re going to discuss a lesser-known function of this site: Storyboards.

As writers, we find inspiration everywhere: in music, in movies, even in other stories. But Pinterest has proved to be an invaluable tool for me and many writers I know for developing our stories, from nailing down the setting to finding fancasts (or faceclaims) for characters. Using Pinterest to make a Storyboard is surprisingly easy and super fun!

STEP ONE: Create the Board

Duh, right? Start a board specifically for your project, labeling it with your title and a description. I like to put my “pitch” or “hook” for the story in the description column to keep myself focused on the heart of the project. If it’s a novel-length work, I usually include comp titles as well.

STEP TWO: Create Sections

Sections will help keep your board organized and easy to navigate. I usually make a section for every character, for setting inspiration, for different character dynamics (friendships, romances, etc.), and any writing tips for the style I’m using for that particular project—for instance, tips on writing in first or third person.

STEP THREE: Start Searching!

It can be hard figuring out where to start with pinning to storyboards! I tend to begin with casting my characters. To do that, picture them in your head: what characteristics do they have? You can plug these into the search bar, and find a face to put to your character.

If you’re not sure what your character looks like or don’t want to start with character, you can always start with setting. Is this a story taking place at a spooky mansion? Search “haunted mansion aesthetic.” Does it take place in Ancient Rome? “Ancient Rome aesthetic.” Fantasy setting? “High fantasy aesthetic.” You’ll be shocked how many inspiring pictures and concepts you’ll come across this way. Just pick a subject, plug “aesthetic” at the end, and Pinterest will churn out all kinds of things that match!

You can also simply search “writing prompts” if you’re struggling with plot or scene ideas!

STEP FOUR: Pin and plot away!

Voila! You are now the proud owner of a storyboard.  Without the help of Pinterest, my plots and settings would be considerably more lackluster, and I cannot recommend it enough. And while you’re at it, find and follow other writers! There’s a whole community of storytellers on Pinterest inspiring each other, and there’s always room for one more.

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