Poll: What do you worry most about in your work?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 02:03
SITE STAFF
Sep 29, 2005

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "What do you worry most about in your work?".

This poll was originally submitted by Channa Montijn

View the poll here

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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Tatty  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:03
Spanish to English
+ ...
Misspellings, leaving little words out Sep 29, 2005

Hi,

I'm paranoid about spelling things wrong, words the spell checker doesn't pick up and leaving out tiny words like of, or, a.


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Claudia Iglesias  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 05:03
Member (2002)
Spanish to French
+ ...
All, but not at once Sep 29, 2005

At different moments I worry about different things.

I worry about deadline when I'm requested to translate more words than I usually do.

I worry about how to translate when the document is difficult. In this case I rely on KudoZ and all the colleagues that are ready to help.

I worry about understanding content when I translate from English and I often ask a friend to proofread, more for the understanding than for the translation.

I worry about being paid when I don't know the client, but it can be very easy to convince me that I can trust the person (the right words, a good feeling).

I worry about not having enough work after two days of forced vacation.

I worry about technical issues when I have Excel sheet embedded in a Power Point or scanned documents that I would like to translate with a CAT tool, when I can't make a quote because it's impossible how many words there are in the document...

I can't say, as you see, that I don't worry about any of them. Luckily it seldom happens that I have to worry about more than one at once.

Claudia


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Giovanni Guarnieri MITI, MIL  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 10:03
Member (2004)
English to Italian
Deadlines... Sep 29, 2005

they are the killer for me. It's always one after the other and are getting tighter and tighter.

Giovanni


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Carmen Cuervo-Arango  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 11:03
Member
English to Spanish
+ ...
Not being able to accept an order from a good client Sep 29, 2005

I am worried about not being able to accept a job from a good client when I am too busy with another translation. It is a moment in which you fail somehow as a service provider, especially when it is a complicated sector and they do not want to change from one translator to another for style/terminological reasons.

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JaneTranslates  Identity Verified
Puerto Rico
Local time: 05:03
Member (2005)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Torn between two; chose the wrong one. Sep 29, 2005

I hovered for a full minute, mousing back and forth between "not getting enough work" and "understanding content." I finally chose the first, because I've been out of the loop for 3 years working on a very difficult book.

But now I wish I had chosen "understanding content," because I am shocked at how few did so. I constantly encounter unknown usages, regionalisms, nuances, slang, cultural and literary references, and the like in Spanish. You know the feeling, don't you? You recognize and understand every word, but can't put it together?

I'm called "bilingual." Many ProZers list two or more "native languages." I'm sure that's true of some of you, but I'm always sceptical. I know very well I'm not "bilingual." And for a language to be "native," it almost has to be the one spoken in your home, with your playmates and peers, and throughout your schooling. Otherwise, there are cultural gaps that are well-nigh impossible to fill. My husband and I are occasionally startled at things that our grown children *don't* know, that "every" American or "every" Mexican child knows.

It's very challenging to stay current with literature, politics, pop culture, and current slang in one language, let alone two.

So yes, I would say that understanding every reference and nuance in a Spanish text, in order to convey it well in English, is my greatest long-term worry.

Case in point: in the movie "The Crying Game" the British soldier Jody describes the difference between cricket as played in his native Antigua and in England: "It's a toff's game [in Tottenham]. But not at home." The subtitle reads: "Es un juego duro allí, pero no en casa." The translator obviously understood "tough game" for "toff's game" and thus totally reversed the sense. *That* is my bogeyman; I'm terrified of making a stupid translation error due to incomplete understanding of the original.


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Anabel Martínez  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 11:03
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
absolutely right Sep 29, 2005

JaneTranslates wrote:

Case in point: in the movie "The Crying Game" the British soldier Jody describes the difference between cricket as played in his native Antigua and in England: "It's a toff's game [in Tottenham]. But not at home." The subtitle reads: "Es un juego duro allí, pero no en casa." The translator obviously understood "tough game" for "toff's game" and thus totally reversed the sense. *That* is my bogeyman; I'm terrified of making a stupid translation error due to incomplete understanding of the original.


I totally understand what you mean. I believe this is where translators can (and must) excel: at being dubious of everything and searching and investigating in order to grasp the exact meaning of sentences that someone not working with languages would pass unnoticed. Of course, with tight deadlines I guess it's sometimes very difficult.

As regards the poll, I'm afraid of not having enough work... Too young, I hope

[Edited at 2005-09-29 18:48]


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lenkl
Local time: 11:03
French to English
Embarrassment Sep 29, 2005

When I’ve translated something and then see it in print or on the Web, my greatest fear is that there will be something obviously wrong, some glaring error, like a gross misspelling in a title, and I’ll want to crawl under the rug. I remember as a college student many years ago, I had written a piece for a campus publication which contained the phrase “the viscous cycle of poverty” in a subheading. I wanted to burn all of the copies, deny that I had anything to do with it and generally disappear from the face of the earth. It’s not quite as bad now: with age you learn to accept that you’re not perfect. Also, I do most of my work for an agency that proofreads everything twice and I get to do a final check of the revised copy, so there are relatively few mistakes in the finished product.
I’m still embarrassed by typos I make when answering KudoZ questions… or when sharing in forums.


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JaneTranslates  Identity Verified
Puerto Rico
Local time: 05:03
Member (2005)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Me too! Sep 30, 2005

lenkl wrote:

I’m still embarrassed by typos I make when answering KudoZ questions… or when sharing in forums.


I'm so glad I *finally* figured out that it's possible to edit my response to an agree! I saw that X mark and thought that was the end.


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