View Full Version : Reasonable terms for payment

02-20-2012, 08:12 PM
Both of us are starving. To save on the front end I've offered a 3% royalty on gazetteers with a $30 front payment and a 5% royalty on the final product with $75 for the world map. I'd like some input here from the people who have done this work and not the wanna-bes like me. I'm strapped, he's broke. Reasonable? Too high? Too low? Terms hinky?


02-21-2012, 07:55 PM
So, no direction on this or is this strictly a private matter? Pecking this out while I wait for the "new" CC3 manual to print out.

02-22-2012, 11:52 AM

I don't have any experience myself with terms or what to charge, but I did find a very interesting thread here where members who do, discussed it.


Maybe it will give you a little insight or spark an idea for you.


02-22-2012, 12:21 PM
Realistically the terms and price that works are terms and prices that you can agree on between you. In general I'd recommend payment up front rather than royalties. The artist has no means of estimating percentage sales, and no means of directly tracking that after the product is on sale, so they more or les have to estimate that royalties will be negligible.

My personal opinion is that if you believe in your product then you should be willing to take the financial risk upfront with the belief that the sales will cover it so that you are able to pay for the cost of the artwork directly. However, that's my own opinion as an artist. However I'd provide a slight warning that quite a few artists feel that way, and if you offer royalties on an unproven unpublished product in lieu of payment on many art forums you'll get some very hostile responses.

But, again, terms and payment are whatever you work out with the person you're working with. If you're both happy then you've got it right. Be clear that you're new to this too and that you're willing to work out an amicable middle ground. Any artist worth working with will understand that and will be happy to have a clear conversation on what they're willing to take.

02-22-2012, 02:34 PM
To reiterate that point- Personally, I see royalties vs. up front as a risk management issue, and would choose to reward my acceptance of risk financially.

For example, If I had a map I would normally charge $150 for ($50 deposit, $100 after completion, with delivery of the artwork after final payment was received) I might be willing to consider a royalty scheme that would ensure I would get compensation based on expected sales, most likely in a declining balance.

Here is a purely fictional example....

If you are retailing the product for $10 and expect to sell 100 copies (based on past performance of comparable products) I would probably ask for $50 up front and a $1.50 per unit sold for the first 100, and $.25 for every unit after that.

So, if it under-performs and only 50 sell, I make $50+$75=$125 ("loosing" money).
My breakpoint is 2/3 expected sales (67 units) where I make the $150 I'd have asked for with no royalty scheme in place.
If it performs as expected, I get reward for sharing the risk and get $200 ("bonus")
If it perform really well, say triple the expected sales, I get reward for sharing the risk, (but at a reduced rate) $50+150+200x$.25=$250

I've made a few such deals and "Lost" on more than I've "won"...

-Rob A>