Collaboration With A Ten Year Old

insect_closeup.jpgThis past weekend I was showing my daughters a preview of an upcoming iPhone game I am currently developing. My oldest daughter, now 10, had a few questions.

After showing her the new game, she asked, “do you think anyone will buy this game?”
“Yes, some people will buy it.”
“How many?”
“I’m not sure. It’s very hard to predict.”
“But the games that you have already made, people are buying those, right?”
“How much money do you make?”
“Not a lot.” I mention the figure to her, and her eyes brighten up. It’s not much to me, but it’s a decent sized monthly income to a ten year old.
“Dad, I would like to help you make this new game.”
“Sure, that would be fine. What would you like to do?”
“I can draw. How about if I draw some new pictures for your game? I think the game should have insects in it.”
I thought about it, and really it was a great idea. “OK, you draw some insects for the game, and I’ll scan them and edit them. Sounds like a good plan.”
“And then, when people buy the game, then you’ll pay me a royalty, right?”
“You know, like if someone else sings a song that you wrote, then they have to pay you some money. It’s a royalty.”
“I know what royalty payments are!!”
“Good, it’s settled. I’ll start drawing right now.”
Although I was slightly surprised and excited to witness the entrepreneurial spirit in my daughter, I couldn’t help feeling that I just got outmaneuvered. As I was standing there in stunned silence, she had one more parting thought for me:
“Dad, I think I’m going to like earning royalties better than doing chores to earn spending money.”
Oh boy. I think I’ll hold off telling my wife for a bit.