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earning money translating while studying interpreting- feedback wanted
Thread poster: Luke Mersh

Luke Mersh  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:09
Spanish to English
Sep 24, 2011

Hi everybody

I am having some mixed thoughts.
I am studying DPSI EN>ES but i would like to start to do translations in the same language pair to earn some money as i see there is more work in that language pair in translation than interpreting.

I am specializing in Healthcare.
Can anybody give me some advice on how to get started earning money or working as a translator while doing my DPSI.?

I am able to translate properly as i was educated in Spain so i am fluent in both written and spoken Spanish.

please advise me.

all the best



[Edited at 2011-09-24 16:04 GMT]


 

ATIL KAYHAN  Identity Verified
Turkey
Local time: 23:09
Member (2007)
Turkish to English
+ ...
ProZ.com Sep 24, 2011

One way is to join ProZ as a full member, and follow the jobs advertised here. This is the simplest that I can think of. Another way would probably be to search for jobs advertised elsewhere on the net. However, ProZ is the largest site on the net in this business.

 

Paula Hernández
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:09
English to Spanish
+ ...
Contacts Sep 24, 2011

I don't think you need to be a paying member of Proz to get jobs, in fact, this year I only got one job through Proz. The rest came from sending CVs and direct contact with clients, and I am living off translation.

If I were you I would contact Medicine departments in universities and hospitals.

Make yourself a professional looking website and send loads of e-mails with a cover letter and a link to you site.

Hope this helps.

Paula


 

Luke Mersh  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:09
Spanish to English
TOPIC STARTER
earning money translating while studying interpreting- feedback wanted Sep 24, 2011

yes I am in the process of making my site, another skill i am qualified in.

so it is possible then?


 

Paula Hernández
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:09
English to Spanish
+ ...
. Sep 25, 2011

luke mersh wrote:


so it is possible then?


Absolutely!


 

Emma Goldsmith  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:09
Member (2010)
Spanish to English
Advice Sep 25, 2011

luke mersh wrote:

I am able to translate properly as i was educated in Spain so i am fluent in both written and spoken Spanish.

please advise me.


There is much more to translating that being fluent in two languages. You need to have excellent writing skills, a good command of your particular field, knowledge of translation strategies (how to localise numbers, measurements, abbreviations, proper names, etc.) and reasonable IT skills.

There are several details in the sample and CV in your profile that suggest you need to improve in all four areas. So, while "earning money translating while studying interpreting" may be very tempting, I think it will be hard to achieve.

Clients look for translators with experience or qualifications (or both) simply because it is more likely that these translators will produce professional translations.

If you haven't got experience or qualifications, then your profile has got to be impressive.
- Improve your sample (get rid of the two errors in the very first sentence)
- Correct your use of capital letters, commas and full stops
- Sign the ProZ Professional Guidelines
- Earn yourself some Kudoz points
- Report your fields of expertise in more detail ("Also works in..." doesn't make you sound very confident about your expertise)
- Become a member.

However, profiles aside, there is one essential question that you need to answer:
Are you a good translator?
And the answer must be an honest one.


 

Luke Mersh  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:09
Spanish to English
TOPIC STARTER
earning money translating while studying interpreting- feedback wanted Sep 25, 2011

@ Emma.

Thank you very much for your suggestions.
I agree with what you have told me in the first part of your post, and that it is better to have qualifications than not, I do intend to become a professional translator after i have pass and completed my interpreting course.

I think I do have a good command of Spanish as I was educated there in the Spanish colleges.
Although not enough to qualify as a professional translator.

I will certainly check and correct any errors i have I my sample and CV in my profile.
I have been answering Kudoz questions.

I will certainly sign the ProZ professional guidelines.
I have been considering if it would be worth while becoming a member at this early stage.

As to your last question. I do believe that I can be a good translator, obviously not as good as most professionals but having been educated in Spain for 15 years, I do think I have a good command of Spanish.
But like many of yourselves "We have all had to start at the bottom and work up"

look forward to hearing from you again.


 

M. F. Pignataro  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 17:09
English to Spanish
+ ...
Take Emma's advice Sep 25, 2011

Hi.

Sorry for my brutal honesty.

The type of comments as "i would like to start to do translations in the same language pair to earn some money" sounds to me like someone who is trying to make some extra cash in the meantime with a non-important activity.

Translation is a very serious profession, it should not be considered a hobby or a temporary job like waiting tables (with all due respect for waiters).

I consider Proz as the house of professional translators and interpreters where we meet to interchange opinions, terminology and, sometimes, to find jobs.

After visiting your profile I would definitely take Emma's advice on how to build a stronger profile as a professional linguist.

Best regards,

Fernanda.


 

Luke Mersh  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:09
Spanish to English
TOPIC STARTER
earning money translating while studying interpreting- feedback wanted Sep 25, 2011

I do take your advice seriously, but we all have to start somewhere.

I am aware that its a serious business just like all others and I am serious about what I do.
After I finish my Interpreting course I am considering studying Translation as this is the route I want to take.

I was simply looking to see if it could be done.
Also I was wondering if there are any books that you would recommend?

This was just a thought and not a threat.

regards


 

Emma Goldsmith  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:09
Member (2010)
Spanish to English
Starting somewhere Sep 25, 2011

You're right, we all "started at the bottom" and, like you, I started without a translation qualification.

The problem is that the market is much more competitive than it used to be. When I started (in 1990 or so) my potential clients were limited to agencies located in Madrid because there was no email, faxes were only just coming in, and so I had to deliver my work by hand! The advantage was that the agencies, in turn, were also limited to translators based in Madrid and so in my case, being a native English speaker with a medical qualification meant that my business got going very quickly, despite my lack of translation qualifications.

So, the question is, where are you starting from? Your 15 years of education in Spain means that your Spanish must be very strong. But has your English suffered as a result? I would advise you to brush up on grammar and style if English is going to be your target language. Or maybe you should really be translating into Spanish if your Spanish writing skills are stronger.

To start off a reading list, I would recommend "Thinking Spanish Translation" by Louise M. Haywood (Routledge) and English style guides such as "The Economist Style Guide" and the "Oxford Style Manual". And on-line you will find http://ec.europa.eu/translation/english/guidelines/documents/styleguide_english_dgt_en.pdf
In the medical field, I expect you're already familiar with the EMA style guide, which is essential for regulatory document translations:
http://www.ema.europa.eu/docs/en_GB/document_library/Regulatory_and_procedural_guideline/2009/10/WC500004442.pdf and the ICH GCP Guideline for clinical trial terminology: http://ec.europa.eu/health/files/eudralex/vol-10/3cc1aen_en.pdf

Best of luck and by the way - I can't resist a quick off topic - I have vivid memories of the Sandy Balls holiday resort you mention in your CV - my brother was bitten by a dog there some 30 years ago!

[Edited at 2011-09-25 18:10 GMT]


 

Luke Mersh  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:09
Spanish to English
TOPIC STARTER
earning money translating while studying interpreting- feedback wanted Sep 25, 2011

@ Emma

Hi Emma.
I am glad that you have given me advice, I began to think that I had upset a few people with this post and was going to close it.

With regards to education although I am fluent in Spanish before i decided to study Interpreting I spoke with IOL and they advised me to brush up on my Spanish, and that is what I have been doing.

It seems easier for me to translate from Spanish to English than the other way around, although I can do both.

Thank you for advising me with what to read and those other documents, I start my DPSI in 2 weeks so I am very excited.

This is hopefully a career change in the right direction, a move away from pub work.
I should have done this when I was younger, but language is really all I have left and I my strongest point.

So starting out: become a paying member or what until I have more knowledge.
and also any other advice you may suggest.

Off Topic: I cant believe you know Sandy Balls, such a small world, it has grown an awful lot in 30 years.

many thanks for your help.


 

Ivars Barzdevics  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:09
English to Spanish
OT: Sandy Balls?????? Sep 26, 2011

Is that a nudist beach?


Sorry.... I couldn't help it!


 

Luke Mersh  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:09
Spanish to English
TOPIC STARTER
earning money translating while studying interpreting- feedback wanted Sep 26, 2011

@ Emma

Hi Emma.
I have just purchased the book you recommended, also do you think at this stage i should become a member or should I wait?


 

Parrot  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:09
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
You'll be in university, won't you? Sep 26, 2011

Ask the science & research departments (biology, chemistry, pharmacy -- the courses that usually lead to some branch of healthcare. And do you have a university hospital?) It's also a chance to check out the chances of finding some kind of internship arrangement where you can really bone up on the subject matter. That's what I did in Spain, following an inverse course of events. See what departments maintain research relations with Spanish institutions.

That's, of course, parallel to any effort to simply translate generalist texts. I just reckon you'll find more motivation and get a head start on specialising.


 

Luke Mersh  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:09
Spanish to English
TOPIC STARTER
earning money translating while studying interpreting- feedback wanted Sep 26, 2011

@ parrot

yes i will be in University in 2 weeks time but my course is a distance learning course, but i do have to go there once a month, so while i am there i will investigate.


 
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