Life Coach Magazine

4 Reasons Writers Should NOT to Use Pinterest

By Writerinterrupted @writerinterrupt

tractor cake (1)In the last year, I’ve probably seen no less than a half dozen articles by smart, well-respected bloggers explaining why you should be on Pinterest and how to use it to drive web traffic. It’s also a big hit with my ladies’ groups at church. How many times have you heard or even said yourself, “I saw the cutest thing on Pinterest…”?

I could be alone in this, but I’m not a fan. It may work for your web marketing strategy, but your home management plan may be better off without it. Here are four reasons writers should NOT to use Pinterest.

1. It’s a satellite office of the Department of Lost Time, especially for writers.

I signed up for Pinterest and promptly lost a weekend in the fun and fascination of browsing and pinning and liking. It’s a little embarrassing, honestly. I know I’m not the only one afflicted, which is why I’ve been thinking about writing a parody article about how to save time on Pinterest. (Tip# 1: Install browser add-ons to make pinning faster! Tip #2: Find people who share your interests and follow their boards instead of creating your own!) I have too many real projects to be serious about a fake one, but all my time-saving “tips” boil down to one easy precept: don’t get on Pinterest in the first place.

2. I’m not good at everything – and I don’t need to be!

It’s true that Pinterest houses all the DIY projects, food art, and party plans a homebody like me should love (and without the incredible nuisance of doing a Google search!) but I find an unusual thing happens as I scroll through other people’s good work. I start in admiration mode, enjoying the wealth of ideas and beauty, but before long I’m comparing myself, my abilities and talents and resources, to others.

“Oh, I wish I could do that.”

“I bet that cost a fortune to make.”

 “Now why didn’t I think of that?”

There are quite a few problems with this sort of thinking. Remember my “too many projects” from Reason #1? Yeah, I definitely don’t need to take on more. Also, I make myself feel lousy while devaluing all the skills and superpowers I do possess. (Example: Excel spreadsheets can be beautiful too!) So why not just focus on what I’m good at and can actually accomplish!

3. I respect intellectual property and have a healthy fear of getting sued.

Call me crazy, but I have a little distrust for sites that make it incredibly simple to misuse other people’s content and rely on a Terms of Service agreement and the honor system to keep everything above board.

Non-legal advice reality check: whenever you distribute content online, you’re implicitly claiming the right to do so. That means you either own the content, or you have permission to use it. If you’re assuming that it must be okay because it’s already online, you’re on shaky ground, friend. At minimum, ask before pinning (and make sure the person you ask has the ability to grant permission!)

4. I have my own creativity, thank you very much!

See the John Deere tractor cake up top? I made that myself with a box of cake mix and a loaf pan. It’s a little messy and a Teddy Graham driver would have been cute, but it came from my imagination. I don’t say so to brag, but to encourage. What cool, quirky, offbeat things might you dream up on your own?

Yes, Pinterest can be handy for inspiration and idea-collecting.  Just don’t let your brainstorming skills atrophy in the bargain. As writers, we’re creative people and most of our creativity should be poured into our work. Not daydreaming about all the pretty things we wish we could make on Pinterest.

Question for You

What’s your oPINion? Have I got it all wrong? Leave a comment!

Photo credit: Brandy Heineman

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