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Poll: Have you ever translated a whole book by yourself?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 01:24
SITE STAFF
Mar 3, 2012

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Have you ever translated a whole book by yourself?".

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Mary Worby  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:24
Member
German to English
+ ...
Yes Mar 3, 2012

The book was a children's book and had about 16 pages and a total of 700 words. Does that count?

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Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 01:24
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Several Mar 3, 2012

My biggest project for which I received credit on the cover was an 800-page manuscript that was published by the University of Texas Press as "Mexico and the United States in the Oil Controversy, 1917-1942."
See: http://www.murieltranslations.com/books_sd/oil_controversy.pdf.

I have also done several books for which I was not credited and countless documents published between covers for employers or contractors--five, about 100 pages each, in 2011.

[Edited at 2012-03-03 08:52 GMT]


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Gudrun Wolfrath  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:24
English to German
+ ...
Yes. Mar 3, 2012

For example

"Working Woman's Art of War: Winning Without Confrontation" by Chin-Ning Chu and some smaller books.


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Ikram Mahyuddin  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 15:24
English to Indonesian
+ ...
Yes, why? Mar 3, 2012

Translating a book by oneself isn't a "special" thing, I think. I have translated several books from English to Indonesian.

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Jack Doughty  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:24
Member (2000)
Russian to English
+ ...
Yes Mar 3, 2012

I once translated a book called "The Secret of Ivan the Terrible" (Тайна царя Иоанна) from Russian into English.
http://www.amazon.com/Secret-IVAN-Terrible-POTR-HOMYAKOV/dp/1436316944
It's a political thriller. I very much enjoyed doing it.

I am currently working on another novel, by two Russian authors who admire P.G. Wodehouse and have written a humorous book set in present-day Russia, in a style similar to his. This too I am enjoying. I like translating the jokes or finding replacements for the untranslatable ones. For instance, there are several based on a heroic TV spy character named Stierlitz, well known in Russia but not in English-speaking countries, for which I try to find equivalents in the James Bond films.

I've also translated several short stories this year, two science fiction and the rest for children.


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Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:24
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
Yes. Mar 3, 2012

Yes, quite a few, mainly novels. Presently I am working on the English to German translation of a book on Native American Healing Techniques - after having edited it. It is planned to be published in 2013.

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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 10:24
Spanish to English
+ ...
Yes Mar 3, 2012

last year, and it was only a short one, about 60K words on animal welfare. The author sent me a copy of the Spanish version and I'm waiting for the English one when it comes out.

Since the subject matter was factual and academic, I found it quite easy as well as interesting, but I imagine that literary translation is much more demanding and am not sure how keen I'd be to accept that kind of book translation.


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tontoon
Turkey
Local time: 11:24
German to Turkish
+ ...
Yes Mar 3, 2012

More than ten. The last one was a Novel, 6 years ago. No time for new books, but I like to translate books.

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Mónica Algazi  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 05:24
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
In fact, Mar 3, 2012

I've just finished translating one into Spanish and am in the process of correcting the entire translation, which will take not less than 10 days. I like it! : )

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Oleg Osipov  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 11:24
English to Russian
+ ...
Yes Mar 3, 2012

Over 12 books from English into Russian. 8 published.



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Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 09:24
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Yes Mar 3, 2012

Just one: “Handbook of Obstetrics & Gynaecology”.

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oxygen4u
Portugal
Local time: 09:24
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Yes Mar 3, 2012

Yes. 15 so far. Two in line to be published and another one came out last month. I translate 3 books every year.

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Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 10:24
Member (2003)
Danish to English
+ ...
My first paid job! Mar 3, 2012

Looking back, I am surprised I took it on, but fools - or beginners- leap in where angels fear to tread.

It was the biography, written in Danish, of a missionary in India. It had been given to a colleague of my parents and it lay unread for a couple of decades, until they heard through the grapevine that I lived in Denmark.

Would I be able to translate it? It was regarded as an important record, but its readership was limited by the language.

It proved quite a challenge. I had to revise my view of the environment I had known as a child - and it was very different seen through the eyes of the adults, although definitely recognisable. My father proofread it for me.

Since then I have translated a couple of cookery books and one on psychology.


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Fabio Said  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:24
Member (2008)
German to Portuguese
+ ...
This question speaks volumes about what people think of book translation Mar 3, 2012

Seeing a question like this is so sad. It's as if someone would ask, "Have you ever translated a whole contract by yourself?", or "Have you ever translated a whole financial statement by yourself?"

People, book translation is *****something you do for a living*****, just like any other kind of translation.

No wonder book translation is underpaid.

As long as there are people who think that book translations are vanity projects - something you do for the pleasure of doing it, or to show your name on the credit page - publishers will always take advantage of this and will pay nothing but peanuts.


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