Romance Trading Cards – Who’s IN?

Download the FAQ

Download RTC Templates

Join the Web Tutorial on Romance Trading Card Templates and GIMP: March 5, 7-9pm EST – Link will be here. DM on Twitter or e-mail for Password.

A chat on Twitter (#romancetradingcards) quickly converged into a fun promotion idea for RT 2011 and RWA 2011. It’s simple — authors print romance trading cards with their heros and heroines and readers can collect them all.

As the questions about design and standardization are beginning to gather so I figured it was time to gather everyone together.

So far, we have this quote from GotPrint if we want to standardize on size. I’ve used them before and found them quite reasonable and user-friendly, but always open for any other vendors with better pricing if you know them:

Standard size & printing: Trading Cards from GotPrint

Other ideas:

  • Cover on one side
  • Character stats on other – Height, age, description
  • Best lines
  • Similar border or logo on backside to unify cards – i.e. knotwork design


So here’s a starter for discussion. These are rough prototypes only. Do not use these files to create your cards. I can provide the layered, high resolution files for use with Photoshop, Fireworks, or another imaging program once the design is finalized.

I tried to choose a neutral border that still felt romance-y. Keeping in mind that this needs to look good with historical, paranormal, contemporary, etc. I went with a border that looked like a pewter frame. The border and the lettering for “Romance Trading Cards” below will hopefully unify the design. The back will be the book cover.

This was a quick job so cropping and other details may be asymmetical. I’ll fix in final version. Actual print size is 2.5 x 3.5.

What do you think?  (I’ve finalized the design with a genre specific color scheme as suggested. Download RTC Templates)

Note: You don’t need special art for the backside. It can include part of your cover (if that’s allowed) or just stats and info like on baseball cards.

An alternative example from author Moira Rogers, independently created here.

Who’s Participating in Romance Trading Cards:

The author listing has been moved to:

And the ideas are flying as well. For example, we may have a listing at RT so readers will know who to seek out for cards. Keep those ideas coming! Who else is in? (Comment below and I’ll gather names and post above)

Remember hashtag #romancetradingcards if you’re following the discussion on Twitter.


  1. Jade Lee
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 14:58:18

    We should find a time to get together and trade cards among ourselves too! And i”ll be going to the Lori Foster event. So I can bring cards to there too!

    And hey, Jeannie! I’m jumpig up and down too!

  2. Sara Lindsey
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 15:44:44

    What a fun idea! I’m in from RT and RWA!

  3. Sara Lindsey
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 15:45:30

    Er, that was *for* RT and RWA… apparently my excitement got the best of me!

  4. PG Forte
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 15:52:26

    Love it. Count me in for RT too, please.

  5. Jeannie Lin
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 15:55:47

    Jade – I think a trading session is a must!! I want these cards. I want them bad.

  6. Courtney Milan
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 17:54:10

    Jeannie, should we number the cards? That would make their collector-ness even more obvious.

  7. Amanda Jayde
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 18:15:30

    Oh I love the idea – as a debut author I’d love to be included. Me for RT please 🙂

  8. Cassandra Carr
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 19:26:13

    Also, what about stickers or a pin or something we could wear signifying us as authors w/cards?

  9. Alanna Coca
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 19:26:33

    Hey, how about a prize for a reader who collects the most? Might be too late to organize something for RT, but it might encourage folks to play.

    I just ordered 100 of each of three titles, is that about what everyone else is doing?

  10. Alanna Coca
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 19:27:43

    “Cassandra Carr says: Also, what about stickers or a pin or something we could wear signifying us as authors w/cards?”


  11. Katharine Ashe
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 20:17:33

    Jeannie, I just love this idea! I’m in for both RT and RWA. 🙂

  12. Lex Valentine
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 22:39:33

    I”m in for RT. This is a great idea!

  13. Z.A. Maxfield
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 23:52:47

    This looks like so much fun! I’m such a technical monkey though, I wonder if I can even do this. I’ll ask around. I’ll be at RT, maybe Lex (I see she just commented) will take pity on me and walk me through it…

  14. Jeannie Lin
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 23:59:13

    I’m looking into RTC pins & stickers to identify participating authors to readers. Stay tuned…

  15. Jeannie Lin
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 00:02:00

    Courtney – You mean numbering each author? That might be something to think about in Phase 2. For now, let’s keep it free form until we find out if we’ve bitten off more than we can chew. 🙂

  16. Kimberly Killion
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 01:55:43

    You are brilliant, Jeannie!
    Count me in for RWA!

    Also, if authors need a character image, I will sell the images off for $10.

    Just send $10 to and then send an email to and let me know which image you would like for you card.

  17. Cathy Maxwell
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 06:14:24

    I think this is a great idea. I’m in. What fun!

  18. Ann Mayburn
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 07:03:35

    Can I say how tottally FREAKING JEALOUS I am that you ladies are doing this! If I win the lottery, I’m so flying to LA just to get these cards. 😀

  19. Cathy Maxwell
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 08:57:09

    Ann, we’ll send them to you. We’re easy. 🙂

  20. Romance Trading Cards | Lex Valentine
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 10:20:03

    […] to make Tales of the Darkworld cards. Here’s a link to the site where it explains everything: Jeannie Lin, Author. And here’s the mock up of my first card. Garrick Forrester, the wizard in Breathe Me In […]

  21. Lex Valentine
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 10:21:04

    Here’s a mockup of my first card. It’s not finalized yet or anything, but I put the character on the front, the cover and info on the back.

  22. Lisa Fox
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 10:28:20

    This is an AWESOME idea Jeannie! Please count me in for RWA!

  23. Romance Trading Cards- Odd Shots
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 10:34:55

    […] a fun little thing has popped up on Twitter: romance trading cards. I know quite a few authors who have been doing these for a while, but as far as I know,* […]

  24. Jeannie Lin
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 10:55:24

    Lovely Lex!

  25. Savannah Chase
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 11:14:23

    I would love to take part for both RWA and RT. I’m not going but I would like to try.

  26. Bella Andre
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 11:30:55

    I’d like to be involved for RT and RWA!
    🙂 Bella ANdre

  27. Killian McRae
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 12:41:18

    I’m in for RT. Can’t do RWA this year. 🙁

  28. Jami Alden
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 13:32:15

    Hi Jeannie,
    count me in for RT and RWA!

  29. Cassandra Carr
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 15:05:10

    Hey – just wanted to clarify – I’ll be at RWA, not RT. Thanks for organizing this!

  30. Kelly Jamieson
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 18:32:09

    I guess I’m in too! (For RT)

  31. Monica McCarty
    Mar 03, 2011 @ 22:45:36

    Hi Jeannie,
    Sounds like fun! I’m in for both RT and RWA.

  32. Eliza Gayle
    Mar 04, 2011 @ 00:03:23

    I’d like to be included for RT.

  33. Cathy Maxwell
    Mar 04, 2011 @ 09:11:33

    Just to clarify–I’m in for RT

  34. Jeannie Lin
    Mar 04, 2011 @ 10:04:28

    I’ll fix that up Cathy…we’re moving all the participants over to a much better organized site LOL. Please bear with me!

  35. LJ DeLeon
    Mar 04, 2011 @ 12:16:23

    Wonderful marketing idea for conferences. Just think how well it will go over at Dragoncon.

  36. Jeannie Lin
    Mar 04, 2011 @ 12:44:09

    LJ – I’m going to DragonCon this year. I think it would be fabulous with all the artists there too. You might need to up the ante at DragonCon.

  37. Dyanne Davis
    Mar 05, 2011 @ 10:41:13

    Fantastic idea, I just saw it. Hope I’m not too late.

  38. Kathy Crouch/Kathleen Crouch
    Mar 05, 2011 @ 13:25:11

    Cool idea I’m sure it will be a big hit. Good luck with it.