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Poll: Is it important to you to have variety in the types of texts you work on?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 05:34
SITE STAFF
Jun 2, 2008

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Is it important to you to have variety in the types of texts you work on?".

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A forum topic will appear each time a new poll is run. For more information, see: http://proz.com/topic/33629


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Cristina Heraud-van Tol  Identity Verified
Peru
Local time: 08:34
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Yes Jun 2, 2008

And it's actually what I like the most of being a freelance translator, the variety of topics I get. Else I would be bored.

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JaneTranslates  Identity Verified
Puerto Rico
Local time: 09:34
Member (2005)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Yes, me too. Jun 2, 2008

I know that it would be, in a sense, "more efficient" if each translator specialized and became an expert in one narrow field. But I would go nuts.

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LinguaLab.net
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:34
English to Norwegian
+ ...
Variety is the spice of life Jun 2, 2008

... and in this job you tend to get a lot of it whether you like it or not!

Today I have returned 5 jobs - on boat hire, waste crushers, psychoanalysis, employment law and switching electricity suppliers. I'd say that's pretty varied...!

Nina Elin Brevik
www.lingualab.net


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Parrot  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 14:34
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Specialize in several fields Jun 2, 2008

JaneTranslates wrote:

I know that it would be, in a sense, "more efficient" if each translator specialized and became an expert in one narrow field. But I would go nuts.


I'd also go nuts if I memorized the General Accounting Plan and purely lived off that

However, I DID decide not to touch certain fields along the way, due to the volume of updating involved (plus, I must admit, a lack of interest). Hence, it's possible to specialize and still have variety.


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Sundar Gopalakrishnan
India
Local time: 19:04
English to Tamil
+ ...
Very very important. . . Jun 2, 2008

. . . for us to have variety. Otherwise the boredom of working with the same type of text will kill us.

We may not accept all types of texts. We may choose those texts which suit our taste and interests. But clients give all sorts of boring topics. What to do then?

Accept them (in order to make money)? Or simply wait for jobs with interesting subjects to turn up?

Sometimes I feel very bad about being a freelance translator. Because people tend to think that we can work round-the-clock. And they also assume us to be "master of all trades." In fact, we are all "jack of all trades!!!"


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María Eugenia Wachtendorff  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 10:34
English to Spanish
+ ...
Variety within my own limits Jun 2, 2008

Parrot wrote:

JaneTranslates wrote:

I know that it would be, in a sense, "more efficient" if each translator specialized and became an expert in one narrow field. But I would go nuts.


I'd also go nuts if I memorized the General Accounting Plan and purely lived off that

However, I DID decide not to touch certain fields along the way, due to the volume of updating involved (plus, I must admit, a lack of interest). Hence, it's possible to specialize and still have variety.



As usual, I fully agree with Parrot

From time to time, however, one of my dear old direct clients starts exploring some new lines of business, or a nephew turns to me for help with his physiotherapy curriculum... And I cannot but oblige, but PHEW! I end up promising myself to never again do anything of the kind.

Generally, though, I get interesting assignments within my areas of specialization.

Have a great week, dear all!


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Fernando D. Walker  Identity Verified

Local time: 10:34
English to Spanish
+ ...
Yes Jun 2, 2008

I first chose NO because I misunderstood the question:oops:. But it was too late to change it. Anyway, for me, it is very important to change topics; especially, if the project is too long. Nevertheless, in the future, I would like to translate those fields I feel comfortable with; for example, global warming, ecology, and the like.
Best regards,
Fernando

[Edited at 2008-06-02 20:09]

[Edited at 2008-06-02 20:09]

[Edited at 2008-06-02 23:06]


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Mathieu Masselot
Germany
Local time: 14:34
German to French
+ ...
Absolutely Jun 3, 2008

You surely all know the show "Who wants to be a millionaire"...
The variety of the documents I already translated allows me to be able to answer to mostly 1 Mio. questions. It's not a joke! We can learn so much about so many things that I would not accept anymore to translate only one sort of texts.


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RichardDeegan
Local time: 08:34
Spanish to English
Good grief !!! Jun 3, 2008

Without variety, why get out of bed?
I'm fortunate enough to get variety through a publisher of various magazines (although the third article on the importance of the APEC Summit in a cycle can put me to sleep faster than you can say "Lytton Bulwer), audit reports (especially the "hallazgos" section in reports for NNGOs, seeing what happens to tax or donation dollars/euros) and other sources.
Most recently I was recuperating from a large section of a "Código" when I received an extract from a historical-political analysis of the Mexican Revolution, which at first glance seemed horrible, but I was able to have a lot of fun making it readable and interesting in English- a labor of love that made my week.


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Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:34
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Variety in style of text. not necessarily subject matter Jun 3, 2008

I don't get bored translating in my chosen domains - for example, diseases fascinate me, and I could do a single disease or several diseases for a very long time and never get bored. BUT it's all in the same format and there's a lot of repetition, then I get bored.

Translating in a field I'm unfamiliar with (e.g., national accounts) is downright painful - and I'm not into suffering.


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