On the other side of the argument, came these facts. Pinterest has grown at a phenomenal speed, catching up with the other social media sites. And it attracts the very demographic that I want to attract to my books. So, somewhat hesitantly and reluctantly, I dipped a toe back into these copyright-threatening waters.
I started out with a promise to myself -- to limit my pins to pictures I have taken myself, or to those that come from websites like the Library of Congress, which clearly states that their pictures can be used without permission. For many people, that would be impossible, but for someone who wants to pin about the Civil War, it's fairly easy. The pictures that tell my stories were usually taken 150 years ago.
I have to admit that there is something very addictive about those "boards." I started with a board for each of my published books, and then expanded them as new collections arrived — like the people and the places of “A Scratch with the Rebels,” Others were more touristy -- my own photographs taken on St. Helena Island and at Fort Donelson, Charleston and Beauford. A few others deal with "Who I Am" by showing some of my community-service oriented activities, and eventually, a board dedicated to the cats of Katzenhaus Books.
Here are a few other book-related ideas you might want to try on your own Pinterest boards:
▪ Quotes about reading and books, especially by other authors
▪ Your own favorite books — those that changed you in some way
▪ Books written by people you know. You and your fellow authors can really help one another by sharing each other’s works.
▪ Unusual bookstores, bookshelves, or libraries
▪ Images that provide information about your particular niche, whether it’s a time period or a do-it-yourself topic.
▪ Images connected to a work-in-progress. These might be clothing from a time period, the settings for the story, maps, or even timelines.
Whatever you as an author choose to do with Pinterest boards, the subjects matter should be designed to help both you and your readers get more out of the reading experience. For example, my most recent efforts included Book Club Ideas for each of my books: recipes for suitable refreshments taken from the book or at least the period of the book; discussion questions, and a short bibliography of related books.
For more ideas, or to see how I use the various types of boards, please enjoy your visits to: http://www.pinterest.com/roundheadlady/