Poll: Do you take a break before proofreading your translations?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 07:07
SITE STAFF
Nov 21, 2009

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Do you take a break before proofreading your translations?".

This poll was originally submitted by Estelle Demontrond-Box

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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Rezehana
Local time: 16:07
English to Albanian
+ ...
Always Nov 21, 2009

I always take a break for at least 20 minutes before proofreading a document I’ve just translated. It helps me regain my strength, rest my mind and eyes and increase my concentration levels.

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Simon Bruni  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:07
Member (2009)
Spanish to English
Whenever possible Nov 21, 2009

Like most, I’m sure, I find it helps to take a break so I can look at the translation with a refreshed mind and also try to read it as though through somebody else's eyes. Ideally I will sleep on it, but when there’s no time then I will often jump in the shower, go for a run or do something else to clear the mind. Menial tasks like housework seem to do the trick. I've heard of authors using similar tactics when they get writer's block.

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Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 07:07
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Always Nov 21, 2009

Too early to tell, but this seems to be a strong trend so far.

I really need to approach proofreading with fresh eyes.

A professional monolingual proofreader once told me that the way to avoid mistakes is to make two passes: one for sense and the second one for typos and style. It's hard to separate the two, but when I manage to do this successfully, fewer problems slip through my fingers. Now if I have just been deep into the translation process, that adds a third layer of confusion and it will be that much harder for me to see the mistakes.

[Edited at 2009-11-21 09:42 GMT]

[Edited at 2009-11-21 09:42 GMT]


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Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 15:07
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
A break from that text, yes Nov 21, 2009

I'm sure most, if not all, of us will agree that that's necessary.

However, I don't necessarily take a break from work - that's not always possible


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Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 15:07
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Yes, I always take a break Nov 21, 2009

before proofreading (ideally one day, a few hours in most cases) and I always read the printed text out loud at least once before handing it in.

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Amy Duncan  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 12:07
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Usually Nov 21, 2009

But sometimes the deadline is too tight and it's not possible. But I definitely prefer to take a refresher break.

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Noni Gilbert
Spain
Local time: 16:07
Member (2007)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Sometimes Nov 21, 2009

But I should imagine that virtually all who have answered thus do so with the caveat that they would ideally always take a break. Can't imagine anyone not recommending it.

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Gianluca Marras  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 16:07
Member (2008)
English to Italian
always Nov 21, 2009

one day, if possibile, otherwise I start another job and after a few hours I go back to the proofreading. You see things differently when you leave it for a while.

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Marlene Blanshay  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 10:07
Member (2009)
French to English
+ ...
absolutely Nov 21, 2009

i finish the translation and then do something else, like fold the laundry or domestic chores. Also, I like to take the laptop away from the desk and sit on the couch with it when I proofread. I need a change of place!

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Paul Kachur
Germany
Local time: 16:07
German to English
+ ...
even a ninety-second rest for the eyes... Nov 21, 2009

Even with a looming deadline, it is best to rest the eyes and relax the concentration for a minute or two before sitting down to proofread.

[Edited at 2009-11-21 15:16 GMT]


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Tina Vonhof  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 08:07
Member (2006)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Print it Nov 21, 2009

If the document is not too long, I print it and look at it several hours later or the next day. I almost always find errors or things that can be improved in the printed version that I did not see on the computer screen.

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Gudrun Maydorn  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 16:07
Member (2008)
English to German
+ ...
Always Jan 3, 2010

Like Simon Bruni I prefer to have a night's sleep before proofreading the text with fresh eyes the next morning. On the rare occasions when the deadline is too tight, I at least have a cup of tea away from the desk. And proofreading is worth it - I always find something to improve.

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