I have been experimenting with using a Pinterest pinboard for gathering pictures that I can use to add to my visual sense and ability to describe things, for a fiction project. My novel-in-progress is set in 1916-17 at the University of Pennsylvania. It’s at the earliest years of the rise of Jazz, and that music, including Ragtime and Stride piano play a role in the story.
In my hunger to understand the period, I want to know what things looked like: clothing, hats, shoes, the college campus, phonographs, luggage, dormitories, classrooms, hairstyles, ads in the newspaper, and so on. To my delight, there are lots of images available from online archives and websites. Pinterest lets me “pin” them to a board dedicated to this project.
I don’t know much about how others are using Pinterest, but this use has been much better for me that collecting images in files on my computer, or bookmarks. My collection is all in one place, and I can poke about in it to help me write what I hope is more image-invoking prose, and give my story more reality and concreteness for the reader.
Have a look at my pin board: College circa 1917
Let me know what you think.