Do you love, love, LOVE working with oracle cards? And you’ve been thinking about creating your own deck for a while now? And … you’ve been wondering how to go about getting your oracle card deck published once it’s ready? If so, this article is for you!
I remember when I created my first oracle card deck back in 2012/2013, I spent quite a bit of time researching all my options before finding the perfect solution for myself at the time. While it’s relatively easy to self-publish books these days (thanks to companies like Amazon or IngramSpark), publishing an oracle deck is more complex.
Depending on the specific requirements of your project, your resources, budget, and so on, there can be quite a few things to consider. And having to put all of the pieces together on your own can feel rather overwhelming.
However, with the right tools, resources, and strategy, publishing your own oracle card deck is absolutely doable—and it doesn’t have to be overly complicated. Here are 3 basic ways to create and publish your own deck of oracle or tarot cards:
Publishing Your Own Oracle Card Deck: 3 Best Ways
1. Self-Publishing Your Oracle Deck Without an ISBN Number (Print on Demand)
If you want to keep things simple for a start, an easy way to self-publish your oracle deck is to get it printed on demand and promote it directly to your community without publishing it as an official book product.
This works great if you’d like to sell your deck on your own website or on an external platform like Etsy. Some of the print-on-demand companies such as MPC or The Game Crafter also offer their own storefronts, which means that your audience can purchase your cards directly from your printing company, and you won’t have to worry about doing your own packaging and shipping.
On the downside, this is also the least profitable option. When getting your deck printed in small batches, your printing costs per deck will be comparatively high, and your profit per sale will be lower than with some of the other options.
2. Self-Publishing Your Deck with an ISBN Number (Print Runs Starting at 500 Decks)
The second option is to get your oracle card deck printed in larger quantities (usually starting at about 500 decks) and self-publish it with an ISBN number.
This way, you’ll be able to distribute your deck to Amazon and bookstores all over the world.
If you want your deck to be available for purchase in bookstores and through online storefronts worldwide, you’ll need to purchase an ISBN number from your national ISBN agency. In most countries, you’ll have to pay a small fee to obtain your ISBN number. In some countries (such as Canada), this service is free.
Ideally, you’ll want to work with a distributor that can warehouse and distribute your oracle cards for you. This way you’ll have access to a large network of retailers, and you’ll be able to sell your product in much larger quantities without needing to fulfill all those orders yourself.
(Note: In order to get an ISBN number for your oracle card deck, you may be required to publish it with a booklet. The rules are different in each country. If in doubt, contact your national ISBN agency for more information.)
3. Finding a Traditional Publishing Company for Your Oracle Card Deck
Lastly, you may want to consider submitting your deck to a traditional publishing house that can produce, distribute, and sell your oracle cards for you.
The advantage of taking this route is that you won’t have to worry about printing, publishing, and selling your deck yourself. Many companies will also take care of the graphic design for you, and you won’t have to source your own artwork unless you want to. As a bonus, you’ll be able to utilize your publisher’s existing network of distributors and booksellers, which will make it easier for you to reach a much larger audience with your work.
On the downside, finding a publisher can be long process that can take some patience, and there’s no guarantee of success. Also, you won’t have as much control over the production of your deck. And yes—you will still be expected to do your own promotional work even though your publisher will do some of your marketing for you.