Anna Fitzgerald wrote:
I am a freelance French to English translator. I have been translating professionally for the last four years and am currently trying to build my client base so that I can support myself as a translator. My idea of a mentor is someone who would share his or her workload. I would gain in experience, rather than being paid. My areas of specialization are religion, biology, biochemistry, chemistry and contemporary art. Having studied biochemistry in both French and American universities, I feel I have the background to become a medical translator and would love to work with a translator in this field.
Another suggestion I have had is to look for volunteer translation work. If anyone has any ideas as to where such work can be found, I would greatly appreciate it.
I agree with Esther, you cannot work for nothing. Is there a chance that you are under-estimating your skills and knowledge?
With field knowledge of biochemistry, you shouldn't have any problems getting work (and you say you have been translating part-time for 4 years).
For some objective feedback, maybe you should do a course (there are plenty online, from the UK anyway), just to learn about the issues involved.
See this post on volunterer work with 'Translators without Borders': http://www.proz.com/topic/28033