Book 200pgs; English to German
Thread poster: Valeur

Local time: 18:51
English to German
Nov 12, 2011

I am quite new to this forum, and to the translation business in general.
I am having difficulties pricing one of my first job options. I am thinking that I should make an offer per word - I have no degree, but am a native German, that have lived and studied in the UK for 3 years.

If anyone with experience in translating books in these languages, could give a few pointers in how to price correctly, I would be immensely appreciative!

My first thought was to charge 0.11€ per word. Is this in the right range, or totally off?

Thanks in advance, Kim.


S P Willcock (X)  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:51
German to English
+ ...
Somewhat on the high side Nov 12, 2011

My own felling is that €0.11 (£0.094) is rather on the high side as a word rate for a book. However, depending on the subject matter you could be right to ask this much.

The Translators' Association of the Society of Authors suggests a "minimum" of £87 per thousand words (see, which at £0.087 per word is more like €0.10. Practically speaking, not many book-length contracts go above this minimum - and certainly not 10% above.

However, this is for literary translation/prose fiction, and although I'm not suggesting that literature is easy in itself, there are other subjects areas are certainly more difficult - is this book an academic text? specialist? legal? medical? technical? Without more information, we may not be able to help you much.

Note also that the Translators' Association mostly exists to help those working into rather than from English.

Good luck with the translation and welcome to the forum! If you want to let us know more about the book, I for once would be glad to hear more.


Maia Rushbury  Identity Verified
English to Russian
+ ...
Just a suggestion Nov 13, 2011

Dear Valeur,

I did not get to translate a book yet. However, the general guidelines for any translation projects are as follows:
The fee for translation is usually based on a rate per 1 000 words in the source text (the text to be translated), but where this is impractical another method may be agreed upon, such as a rate per 1 000 words produced in the target text, or an hourly rate.
Typically, a large-size project warrants a discount and therefore I suggest you offer a 15-20% discount on your original rate, shall we say 87GBP (I take it you are commissioned by a UK-based client). You may also consider contacting your client to inquire about their budget.
In order to be able to negotiate the cost of your project to the satisfaction of both parties you might find helpful the following information: 5 Ways To Negotiate More Effectively

There is another point I would consider, which is a Copyright in Translations issue.
For more information please go to:
(Recommended Model General Terms of Business for commissioned Translation Work, Institute of Translation & Interpreting, UK, see p.2 Section Copyright in Translations).

I hope you find this information helpful.


Local time: 18:51
English to German
Thank you Nov 17, 2011

Thank you so much for replying to my post!
I appreciate it a lot. Its an academic book in the field of sociology.
Unfortunately the job was set aside for someone else - but I will definitely be able to use your pointers for negotiating future offers.
Thanks again,icon_smile.gif


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Book 200pgs; English to German

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