If your text combines several disciplines, do you expect one translator to be familiar with them all? Do you hire a small team of translators with complementary expertise? Or can you help with some of the terminology yourself?Continue reading “The Multidisciplinary Challenge”
When writing for experts, jargon needs no explanations. But if you write for a mixed audience (e.g. for the general public as well as potential scholars researching your topic), you need to adjust your content and style as well as strike a balance between detailed and approachable information. Space permitting, a glossary may be a smart addition, for your audience as well as for your translator.Continue reading “Think Glossary First!”
Back in July, I wrote about revamping my website with photos of green street art. The truth is that I had another idea initially, but it didn’t work out.
Having a passion for photography, one sunny weekend in June, I went to a local beach to take photos of an old lighthouse. Looking through the view finder at the sea-facing side, Continue reading “Raising Awareness of Translation”
Spending time with fellow translators never feels like work. And Saturday was one of those quality-time events with my wonderful colleagues from the Bristol-Bath area.
The ITI WRG’s (a regional group of professional translators) Members’ Day was a half day of networking and knowledge-sharing, included several 5-minute presentations by some of our members on a variety of topics that may Continue reading “An Eclectic Translators’ Community”
Although checking the facts in your text is beyond the translator’s remit, hiring a linguist who has a certain level of expertise in your particular field could save you from the embarrassment of oversights.
Of course, a translator will focus on the language first; the content is down to you and, if there are mistakes in the source document, the translator cannot be expected to spot them all, if any. It is your responsibility to ensure that the text is accurate and ready for publication. But we’re all human and, despite your diligence, translators Continue reading “The Added Value of a Specialist”
The fact that, after completing an MA in translation, some qualified students decide not to pursue a career in that field after all shows that even aspiring linguists can have misconceptions about translation, and that “speaking another language” is far from enough to be a capable translator.
Some students, believing that their degree in two or more foreign languages already gives them the skills required and that an MA will only Continue reading “From Dream to Reality”
When two translators meet, you can bet on the questions that they will ask each other; they are always the same. Yet it is never boring. In fact, it is an important conversation and clients can benefit from asking those same questions to any translator they meet.
While these questions make handy ice-breakers, they also enable us to Continue reading “Join the Translators’ Conversation”
Following my previous article in The Linguist, I was invited to write a double-page article on art translation – and it’s made the front page! This article demonstrates the importance of working with a specialist translator and explains what a specialist does to keep up with a constantly evolving field.
Out of the blue, a Toronto-based artist contacted me, asking whether my MA dissertation (on J. M. W. Turner and the Industrial Revolution) was available for purchase. Who would have thought! The artist is currently doing some research on Turner and found my details in the Association of Art Historians’ member directory.
While my translation services are irrelevant in this case, this anecdote illustrates that translators are everywhere, even where you might Continue reading “Give the Cream to Those who Want it Most”
In September, I completed a MOOC in Social Psychology with the Wesleyan University (USA) via Coursera and I’m pleased to report that I passed with distinction (91%). So what was the course like?
Well, I expected a MOOC to be a fairly light course, but it proved fairly demanding: each week comprised several videos to Continue reading “The MOOC Experience”
Depending on your text, there may be times when any good generalist translator can handle it. However, it is worth thinking long term. Is this just a one-off or could you need translation services again? If the latter, you obviously want to go back to the same professional next time if possible, so it may be a better idea to find a language partner who specialises in your field right from the start in case more demanding documents Continue reading “Working with a Specialist”
It is somewhat unsettling to receive panic requests from agencies asking whether I would be available to translate some urgent medical text. I do not touch medical documents and my professional indemnity insurance would not cover me in case of subsequent incident. Do agencies ever go back to the client and admit that they could not source a competent person in time to meet the tight deadline they had promised? Or are there individuals who do take such assignments on despite their lack of Continue reading “Talk to the Expert Direct”