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Request about deadlines
Thread poster: Maria Lekka
Maria Lekka  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:10
Greek to English
+ ...
Oct 29, 2004

I just got my first project, which is of 118000 words. Since this is my first job, Iwould like to know about how much time is needed to complete it.

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Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 10:10
English to Spanish
+ ...
Depends Oct 30, 2004

It depends on how much you can do in a day's time. Then divide 118,000 by that figure and you have the number of days. Then add the number of days that you would expect to be off during that time (not working).

That's how long it will take.


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Kevin Fulton
United States
Local time: 12:10
German to English
Negotiate this with the client up front Oct 30, 2004

The deadline is part of the terms and conditions, as is the rate of payment. Both should be agreed upon before accepting a job.
Kevin


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Harry Bornemann  Identity Verified
Mexico
English to German
+ ...
I would give you 100 - 150 days Oct 30, 2004

Since it is your first project, you will have to revise it several times and nevertheless there will be a lot of errors in it.

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Graciela Carlyle  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:10
English to Spanish
+ ...
Agree with this Oct 30, 2004

Harry_B wrote:
Since it is your first project, you will have to revise it several times and nevertheless there will be a lot of errors in it.


You might be able to go a bit faster than 1500 words a day for translation but you have to consider time for research and revising which will bring the average down by about half.

Also consider that the days you calculate are Working Days. If you calculate 100 days and give a delivery date exactly at the 100th day, you won't have any free time left (it's okay for a short project, but not for 4 months; e.g., you never know when you'll need to go to the doctor's - hopefully not)

If it's your first project, it would also be a good idea to have it revised by someone else (you'll have to add this to your rate).

Good luck!!!
Grace.

[Edited at 2004-10-30 10:34]

[Edited at 2004-10-30 10:35]


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xxxLia Fail  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 18:10
Spanish to English
+ ...
10,000 words a week Oct 30, 2004

118,000 / 10,000 = 12 natural weeks (60 working days).

That's a rough/reasonable calculation based on averages. It also includes the revision element.

From my own experience, after over 10 years, it's difficult to do more than 2,000 technical words a day.

For a non-technical text, maybe 2500-3000 words a day, but for a large text, there is also the fact that sometimes you get bogged down a bit (for many possible reasons).

If you calculate 2000 (fully revised) words a day, on the basis of 5 days a week steady work, you still have a margin of the two weekend days, in case of emergencies or special difficulties. It would be madness, in fact, to commit to much more, as inevitably there will be interruptions and problems...

For a project of this size, I would -personally - calculate as follows:

1st Draft (i.e. getting it into the computer fast):
4000/day = 30 working days (a month to a month and a half).

2nd draft (researching terminology and domain language):
8000/day = 15 working days

Review on screen, review in print and final corrections on screen:
The remaining 15 days.

As a beginner you may be less rapid, so you should take that into account and maybe allow for an additional 10-20% in terms of time.

Furthermore, the way you work and the tools you use may mean that you approach it differently. I personally tend to feel nervous until I actually have some form of a draft - no matter how bad - in the computer (it's a kind of 'reading' anyway, once I have read through it I have a feel for the topic and am better prepared to do my research). However, if there is repetition and you are using a CAT tool, then it's better to do a reasonably good first draft.

HTH:-)

Good luck with project...!


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Mónica Machado
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:10
English to Portuguese
+ ...
be careful Nov 1, 2004

Hi MARIA,

Since this is your first project, I am very surprised you will be willing to accept a rather large translation assignment all by yourself. Specially when you have no idea of the time needed. Of course your question is a normal one for a beginner but the wordcount isn't.

A large project of this sort will need special care regarding terminology and style consistency, which is very hard to obtain when we are just starting, specially because we aren't aware of all the difficulties - no matter our effort to.

I am also quite surprised your client trusted that project to you before knowing how long it would take you to do it. Maybe you should ensure that your client is a trustworthy one. A client assigning a project without agreeing on the deadline is rather suspicious to me. Well, and for a project of that size my suspicions would just go up... a lot!!!

Apart from agreeing with other Prozians' comments,I also would like to point out that before accepting a large translation job as that one you should be quite certain you are able to do it with reasonable quality otherwise you will be "burning" your name before having one in the market.

I really wish you all the luck

Kind regards,
Mónica

English into European Portuguese Translator
Member of APT and IOL & Associate Member of ITI


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 18:10
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Think 250 words to 350 words per hour Nov 3, 2004

MARIA LEKKA wrote:
I just got my first project, which is of 118000 words. Since this is my first job, Iwould like to know about how much time is needed to complete it.


At 250 words per hour (if it's difficult), and at max 10 hours per day, it'd be 48 days. At 350 words per hour (if it's easy) and at max 10 hours per day, it'd be 34 days. It could be faster if there is repetition and you are able to use CAT.


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xxxHirschmann  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:10
English to German
+ ...
What about down payment? Nov 12, 2004

MARIA LEKKA wrote:

I just got my first project, which is of 118000 words. Since this is my first job, I would like to know about how much time is needed to complete it.

As a free-lance translator for almost 31 years, I suggest to be aware of the fact that your customer may go bankrupt after or even before you deliver your translation, and that your client may reject it for unsubstantiated or well-founded reasons.

If I were you, I'd ask the client for a considerable down payment of, let's say, 3000 Euro.

It's only a little problem to translate 1000 words for nothing but to work on a hefty number of 118,000 words of source text without being paid will lead to severe frustration.


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Michael Bailey  Identity Verified
Austria
Local time: 18:10
German to English
+ ...
You've landed a big fish Nov 13, 2004

MARIA LEKKA wrote:

I just got my first project, which is of 118000 words. Since this is my first job, Iwould like to know about how much time is needed to complete it.


I would definitely advice that you negotiate an advance - this is a project that even at 2000 words a day (and that is a lot one a day basis) will take 60 working days - add to this the revision time - another 30 days perhaps, and given the inexperience factor - I remember taking on a 30 page translation after having done translation methodology at Uni and feeling overwhelmed (the text was around 20000 words) - you'll be lucky to get it done in under 120 working days - that's 24 weeks (i.e. almost 6 months). The worst thing you could do is to set yourself unrealistically short times - 120000 words is a massive amount. If you are not translating into your native tongue it may take considerably longer. The longer it takes, the more important the retainer is.

Mike


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Michael Bastin  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:10
English to French
+ ...
hopefully you'll use... Nov 19, 2004

a translation memory for a project this size, otherwise you may have a difficult time with consistency.

My 2 cents


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