How a translator buys a teapot For health reasons (inflammation of the joints), I have to abstain from artificial sugar, high-acid foods, and coffee. I have been doing so – not 100% successfully – for about three weeks. I have also been drinking litres and litres of water and herbs teas to cleanse my system or… Read More in The translation that wasn’t
Sources of Joy – Days 96 and 97 Perhaps I have been unduly influenced by a curious blend, inter alia∗, of pop psychology, New Age thinking and French literary trends c. 1920–1960. Today’s events on my little planet revolved around the theme of choice, something I expounded upon at length for about a decade straddling… Read More in Decisions
Sources of Joy – Day 95 Day 93 (Friday) finally saw the delivery of my office table, a bargain second-hand buy. The last piece of the intricate puzzle that is my new office space, now placed together with the inadequate desk I already possessed, gives me a large desk space on which to order my… Read More in New rhythms
Sources of Joy – Days 40, 41 and 42 Do not jump to any conclusions. All dealings at the Evento regional da ProZ em Porto, Portugal and the Freelance Box event held this weekend in Porto were strictly professional, she said prudishly. The confessions part of the title owes its existence to a fleeting thought… Read More in Confessions of a conference lover
Sources of Joy – Days 38 and 39 I am not sure that there should be a space between these two days. They form a contiguous blob in my mind. Each blob contained high anxiety levels tempered only by the calming effect of having a mountain of work from saving me from having to think… Read More in In between
Sources of Joy – Day 35 There is a well-known hymn: Lead kindly Light, amid th’encircling gloom; Lead Thou me on! The tune of the hymn linked here is not the one I know, but beautiful, anyhow. Just as beautiful is the very recently published collaborative effort of freelance translators giving voice to their own… Read More in Lead kindly Light
Contemplating quality Day 26 – a Friday – started early and stretched itself to the ridiculously late, thus flying in the face of all that it methodical, disciplined, rational and desirable, even. It was a day to shift mountains, dig deep, travel far and yet stay fixed in one place. It was a day when thoughts… Read More in Sources of Joy – Day 26
Desk-bound, yet free Now that I have had the benefit of some quality sleep, I can highlight what brought me joy yesterday, when my workload meant movements were restricted to within spitting distance of my desk. There is a certain joy which those in occupations which demand imagination, creativity and problem-solving are familiar; it is… Read More in Sources of Joy – Day 23
Work I really do love working. I got confirmation of an editing assignment set to begin in about three month’s time. The client offered to make part-payment at the beginning of the job, which made me feel about ten times more special than I really am. Other aspects about this job which delight me are… Read More in Sources of Joy – Day 22
Sleep I love sleep. I especially love the rare occasion when I get 8.5 hours’ sleep in a row. Last night’s unusual headache had me retiring early. The real joy is experienced today: No headache, and a marked increase in concentration. This makes me a happy, efficient translator. So happy, in fact, that I could not… Read More in Sources of Joy – Days 11 and 12
A good day’s work always makes me extremely happy, and that is what I had today. With one urgent assignment thrown into the mix, I did not even have time to go out and buy another pack of cigarettes, and that will make quite a few other people happy. I am grateful for that little vapour… Read More in Sources of Joy – Day 10
Birdsong, long deadlines, a wedding, and devotion Birdsong at 06:00 reminded me that I am really a morning person, despite my love of burning the midnight oil. I got phoned from Switzerland today (Tuesday) with a request to do an effective 140-word translation by Thursday 10:00 a.m. For those of you who are not translators,… Read More in Sources of Joy – Day 3
A regular client (agency) sent me 160 words for urgent translation this morning. I opened the document to discover that it was already in English. I sent a quick reply and let her know that even with the best will in the world, translating that short piece into decent German would be impossible for me…. Read More in What is German?
Private and Personal I freely admit that up until very recently I answered all translator forum polls regarding Facebook with the comment that I reserve Facebook for friends and family, and use ProZ, LinkedIn and Google+ and, to a certain extent, my blog, for interaction on a professional level. I had this idea that I… Read More in Rethinking Facebook
I do have a good laugh when I choose to write on a subject about which I know so very little. When I was still at school, we had to read a novel by George Duhamel entitled Le Notaire du Havre which, as now expected with so much of modern literature, had nothing – and… Read More in A difficult balance
Some poets find poetry in the most surprising places. Translators can also find lyrical bits in dry texts. When I come across them, I sometimes scribble these fragments down. These are gleanings from a few target texts I have produced in the last week, which bear no relation to the general import of the text… Read More in Incidental lyricism
As I have already indicated, tired old soap operas do it, so I am going to. I am giving you a recap. I am drawing your attention to some bits of my blog you may have missed. I am astounded that my previous post, published in the wee hours three days ago has attracted so… Read More in Tired old soap operas do it
There are not too many translators who readily accept scanned copies of documents for translation. Even translators who were touch typists before the introduction of function keys on computer keyboards (such as I) become lazy. We love our computers. We love our CAT tools which obviate the necessity for (a) typing and (b) formatting. These… Read More in New typewriter required
Imagine you have one tape cassette which you play over and over on a portable tape deck. The tape was recorded on this same tape deck while sitting as close to the gramophone as possible as a borrowed long-playing record of Amália Rodrigues singing the fado filled the air. At the end of Side 1,… Read More in Oh, fadista!
Even though we strive for – and frequently achieve – excellence, we translators are normally quite a modest lot. Except today, I received such wonderful feedback from an agency, I could not contain myself. I blew my own trumpet on Facebook, which I reserve for interaction with family and friends. In typical translator fashion, I quoted the… Read More in Trumpets and translation
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