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Successful translators, have you ever considered to quit translation ?
Thread poster: Benoit HUPIN

Benoit HUPIN  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 23:45
English to French
+ ...
Dec 14, 2010

Hello everybody,

This question is mainly for well-established translators.
Have you ever considered to quit translation ? Why ? Too much work for a just-above average revenue ? Not enough social life ? The feeling of not having any life ? Loss of interest for this activity ?

Any comments or feelings about this question will be welcomed.

Regards,

Benoit


 

Spencer Allman
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:45
Finnish to English
Not really Dec 14, 2010

Many translators, like myself, get into it later on in life so quitting is often not an option.

But it is hard work, you have to put up with a lot of stupidity sometimes, and I would definitely stop if I won the lottery (although I would translate a novel - at leisure)


 

imatahan  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 18:45
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Never Dec 14, 2010

As a freelancer, I can slow down the rythm when I'm tired, or busy, or I have to give attention to my family.

It's been always a pleasant work, it's never bored or annoyed me. Some clients do... But I'm free not to work with them ever again.


 

polyglot45
English to French
+ ...
Yes Dec 14, 2010

And I did, which is why this is now a second string and not my main occupation !

 

Jørgen Madsen  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:45
English to Danish
+ ...
Many times Dec 14, 2010

Maybe I will never leave translation completely, but I do plan to translate much less than I do at the moment. One day when I don't need to earn as much as now, I will certainly reduce the number of hours I put in each day.

Why?

I want to work less and live more and do things I take pleasure in, things that give me energy instead of draining me of it. I also want to spend more time away from the computer to avoid the many health problems in connection with sedentary work. Another obvious reason is the lack of respect for translators in general leading to ridiculously low rates, slow paying clients and unreasonable conditions in the business. Sometimes it just makes me so sick of this work which I seldomly find rewarding in any way.


 

xxxValeria_2323
Argentina
Local time: 18:45
English to Spanish
Yes, I did Dec 14, 2010

Yes, I have considered quitting due to the low rates and the lack of work stability. You never know what will happen, and it is hard to become indepedent!

[Editado a las 2010-12-14 17:36 GMT]

[Editado a las 2010-12-14 17:36 GMT]


 

xxxS P Willcock  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:45
German to English
+ ...
A paradoxical question? Dec 14, 2010

Isn't there a contradiction in the very question, though? If you are successful and well-established, why should you think of quitting?

For myself, I couldn't imagine another lifestyle or job that would suit me so well. I get to nose around in other people's business, I am in charge of my own time, I can badger commissioning editors about the best novels I've read lately and I keep alive my extra languages that are not (widely) spoken in the country where I'm living at the moment.


 

Pablo Bouvier  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:45
German to Spanish
+ ...
Successful translators, have you ever considered to quit translation ? Dec 14, 2010

Benoit HUPIN wrote:

Hello everybody,

This question is mainly for well-established translators.
Have you ever considered to quit translation ? Why ? Too much work for a just-above average revenue ? Not enough social life ? The feeling of not having any life ? Loss of interest for this activity ?

Any comments or feelings about this question will be welcomed.

Regards,

Benoit


I'm thinking about. I have already a certain age and after after more than 30 years in the translation arena I'm thinking about the relay. But, I also think a translator never fully retire because it is perhaps one of the few occupations where age is not a determinant factor.




[Bearbeitet am 2010-12-14 21:29 GMT]


 

Benoit HUPIN  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 23:45
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Not so paradoxical Dec 14, 2010

S P Willcocks wrote:

Isn't there a contradiction in the very question, though? If you are successful and well-established, why should you think of quitting?



Not so paradoxical. Being successful and able to charge high rates implies a lot of pressure and always being at the top. It is physically and mentally exhausting. I really have the feeling of sacrificing the best years of my life working 12 hours a day for people who do not have and do not want to have the slightest idea of what their silly requests imply and of what translation is all about.

Anyway, I have no choice for the five years to come, but once I will no longer need to earn what I earn now, I will seriously consider doing something else and simply... live.


 

FarkasAndras
Local time: 23:45
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Not yet Dec 14, 2010

S P Willcocks wrote:

I get to nose around in other people's business, I am in charge of my own time

Those are the two things I love most about translation!

I haven't considered quitting, but then I haven't been in this business for that long. I'm not sure how you can measure success in translation, either.


 

xxxPT Translati
United States
Local time: 14:45
Japanese to English
Amazing how split the opinions are... Dec 14, 2010

It's amazing how it's pretty much split 50/50, as far as people who love it and people who just seem to hate it. I'd say moreso than any other career I've ever contemplated. No matter what country's translator portals/sites I went to, the opinion is pretty much split.

So much so that I made a decision a while back to find out for myself. So far so good.


 

Bilbo Baggins
Catalan to English
+ ...
I love translating Dec 15, 2010

So I wouldn't give up if I could avoid it and would surely carry on - for me:-)

 

Bilbo Baggins
Catalan to English
+ ...
The hate word Dec 15, 2010

PT Translation wrote:

It's amazing how it's pretty much split 50/50, as far as people who love it and people who just seem to hate it. I'd say moreso than any other career I've ever contemplated. No matter what country's translator portals/sites I went to, the opinion is pretty much split.

So much so that I made a decision a while back to find out for myself. So far so good.





It seems to be going a bit far to talk about people that "hate" it. I imagine myself to be in a profession that's mostly populated by people who like their job, some of whom may be a bit tired of certain aspects ....

In fact, so far, you are the only person who mentions the word "hate" regarding translation - in a sum-up that does not, in fact, reflect the comments to date in this forum.


 

Steven Capsuto  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:45
Member (2004)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Nope Dec 15, 2010

Perfect job for me. I spent years getting extricated from my previous profession so I could do this full time.icon_smile.gif

 

Gillian Searl  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:45
Member (2004)
German to English
Not quitting but... Dec 15, 2010

This thread caught my attention because after 10 years I am thinking about adding an extra string to my bow. Being a freelance translator is excellent but there are times when I think doing something else/in addition would spice things up a bit. I am thinking about
1) becoming a translation agency
2) becoming a CAT tool trainer
3) becoming an interpreter

Any other suggestions, advice or tips greatly appreciated.
Gillian


 
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