Having just answered another inquiry about why I don't write tutorials for certain things I thought I'd explain the cost issues of writing a tutorial.
I had a conversation with the wonderful Mr. Patrick Duggan on this subject just last week.....a little brain picking as he moves into the world of tutorial writing.
OK....so, you want to write a tutorial.
First you need to design it, so that might take a day or two or a week or two for this example let's say it's a 40 hour week.
Design is getting the idea, developing it, beading it, making any changes and tweaks. Designers in the 'real' world make good money so you you'll want to charge your time accordingly...at least $15 an hour.
So 40 x $15 = $600
Plus the costs of materials...including all samples, most designers make at least two and often three samples.
Say this piece isn't too spendy and costs $20 per sample.
Two at $20 = $40
Running total = $640
Next up is writing the tutorial so you better have your illustration/ photographic skills ready.
As I illustrate I'll price on that.
Graphic designers/illustrators make good money...I know I used to be one, and I know that if I farmed this out it would actually cost me hundreds if not thousands for this service. But let's go with the $15 an hour.
Two days of illustrating, two days of writing, tweaking, photographing and editing. That's 4 x 8 hours @ $15 an hour = $480
Running total $1120
And this doesn't include overheads.
So....how much does it sell for.....price too high and it won't sell, price too low and you'll have to sell a LOT more.....for this amount of work I'd be looking at a $20 dollar price tag.
So....the first two tutorials I sell will pay for the supplies and I have to sell 56 tutorials before I'm paid for the work. And that can take a week or a year or more.
If you work a regular job, you work for a couple of weeks or a month and get paid...and many times you can't wait for payday to get here. You work and you know you will be paid for that work....not in this business, the reality is you may have to wait 5 years to be fully compensated for a piece.
When you release a new design you hope and you better have a lot of patience, and belief in yourself and your design...because lack of sales is tough on the ego as well as the bank account.
Some designs don't make it to tutorial simply because when tested, photos posted on Facebook, they get a cool response which doesn't bode well for sales. Sometimes that just requires a change of palette but it does mean back to the drawing board.
Some designs like the one I was asked about this morning, my Armadillo Blossom purse, will never be tutorials because they would take way too long to write and not many people would want to put THAT amount of work into something let alone the $80 the tutorial would have to cost.
For me this is a business, my sole income and when you have no financial back-up (husband, pension, lottery winnings) you have to step back a little from the artistic and let the business side come to the fore.
Some designs are just not financially viable no matter how much you and everyone else likes them.