We laugh, cry, and feel all sorts of mushy things; let’s give back to the writers who give us the words to express these feelings … let’s celebrate Hug A Greeting Card Writer Day! This day is held each year on September 18 to honor the talents of these amazing writers. While we still don’t know who created this day, we are all in for this celebration.
History of Hug A Greeting Card Writer Day
Exchanging greeting cards is a custom that started in ancient times. Some records indicate the Ancient Chinese would exchange messages of goodwill during the New Year. There have even been papyrus scrolls that the Ancient Egyptians used as ‘greeting cards.’
By 1400, paper greeting cards — also the valentine, which was the oldest greeting card — were made in Europe, and Germans were sending woodcut cards. A century later, inscribed greeting cards came out, and by the 1800s, hand-painted copper plates were in great demand. Multiple advances in printing in this same period made the greeting very popular and easy to access. Commercial production of greeting cards started in 1860, and the very first cards were, of course, Valentines (with applied Christmas ornaments and verses). German immigrant Louis Prang — called the father of the American Christmas card — settled in Boston around this time, opened a printing business, and the greeting card industry boomed. He began with simple album cards of flora, birds, animals, and added to this before eventually creating seasonal greetings in 1875. His cards were all the rage in America and around the globe. He even began design competitions in 1880, a tradition that was continued by Hallmark, with the Hallmark Cards Art awards. He was on top of the greeting card game until European producers came into the market with inexpensive cards. From 1900 to World War I, the greeting card industry ran under German monopoly. The U.S.-made cards came back with a bang in 1910 and gained an impetus during both Wars. They then adopted the custom of exchanging cards on seasonal and regular occasions, and U.S. greeting card manufacturers assumed world leadership.
Among them was the Hall Brothers card company — later rebranded to Hallmark — which initially crafted picture postcards. Founded by Joyce Clyde Hall and his brother in Kansas City, Hall Brothers card company had a good run for about five years until sales declined. Then, they turned to making greeting cards, and chose the term ‘hallmark’ as it was used by goldsmiths to describe a “mark of quality.” Hallmark was also the first company to display cards on shelves standing up. Before this, they were put in drawers. Now, the world is going paperless, but greeting cards are still used in many countries, with America holding one of the top spots.
Hug A Greeting Card Writer Day timeline
There is evidence to show that paper greeting cards are made in Europe by this time; Germany is also making woodcut cards.
Charles Duke of Orleans pens what the world considers the oldest Valentine card ever, to his wife, while imprisoned in the Tower of London.
English academic painter John Callcott Horsley designs a Christmas card for his friend, Sir Henry Cole.
Goldsmiths use 'hallmark' to denote a 'mark of quality;' the owners of the Hall Brothers card company think this word fits their company's image well, and they rebrand.
Hug A Greeting Card Writer Day FAQs
How do you become a greeting card writer?
The common way to become a writer would be to earn a Bachelor’s Degree, take on an internship with a greeting card company (or any writing internship), and consider freelancing with such companies to get some contacts.
How much does a greeting card writer make?
Indeed.com shares that on an average, greeting-card writers in the US make $51,000 a year, and in New York and San Francisco, they earn close to $70,000.
Does Hallmark accept submissions?
Unfortunately, Hallmark does not accept or purchase unsolicited submissions of ideas, artwork, photography, or writing for their greeting cards.
How To Celebrate Hug A Greeting Card Writer Day
Encourage the writers
People who are skilled at penning down just the right words at the right time are special. Encourage this talent; help them hone their skills in any way you can, by sharing writing workshop details, or simply offering words of encouragement. You never know, one of the people you encourage and support might just turn out to become a greeting card writer.
Create your own greeting card
Sign up for courses that help you create greeting cards from scratch, and make sure you inscribe them with your own words, preferably handwritten. The cards are more special that way.
Visit a greeting card museum
Loads of places around the globe have museums that feature special, funny, best, and even the oddest greeting cards. Check out the Smithsonian Design Museum, the National Museum of American History, or the Cooper Hewitt collections.
5 Fun Facts About Greeting Cards
From me and my pet
A survey by the American Animal Hospital Association found that 70% of people include their pet's names on greeting cards.
There is a greeting card competition
Called the International Greeting Cards Award Competition — or the Louies — they are named after Louis Prang and recognize the best cards each year since 1988.
The White House sends a card
In 1927, President Calvin Coolidge sent out an official Christmas card; this was the very first one sent by the White House, and this tradition has continued since.
Greeting cards galore
At one point — in 2010 — a survey revealed that around 170 billion greeting cards were sent per year in America.
Very expensive greeting cards
Gilded Age Greetings sells custom-made greetings cards priced around $395-$4,995; some are even embroidered with real gold!
Why We Love Hug A Greeting Card Writer Day
We can celebrate these unsung heroes
How do you choose your greeting cards? We go by the witty and often hilarious writing on the cover. Also, we have realized that there is absolutely no attribution to the writers, which is why we are gung-ho about celebrating this day.
We like hugs
Finding and hugging the stranger who helped us feel good simply by penning down a few words might not be the best thing to do. That's why this day, with its appreciative tone becoming the hugs we cannot give, is perfect! Of course, if you know of a real live greeting card writer — and are on 'hugging terms' with them — what are you waiting for? Appreciate them!
We are writers, too
With all those messages we type out ourselves — social media, text, personalized cards — we become our own greeting card writers! We can spare some time to appreciate the work we put in, can't we?
Hug A Greeting Card Writer Day dates