Translating and editing with InDesign
Thread poster: Vicky Ch.
Vicky Ch.
Spain
Local time: 21:16
English to Spanish
+ ...
Nov 4, 2010

Hello,

I have been offered a translation straight to be done in InDesign. I have never done this before, and I'm completely at a loss about the rates I should apply. Should I charge my usual translation rates then add the editing charges? How much usually should be applied for editing?

Help!

Thank you!


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Alexey Ivanov  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 22:16
English to Russian
By the hour, applying your normal hourly rate Nov 4, 2010

I would do so only by the hour, because translating derectly in InDesigh is extremely cumbersome and time-consuming.

[Edited at 2010-11-04 13:36 GMT]


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Mickey Argaman  Identity Verified
Israel
Member (2006)
English to Hebrew
+ ...
Trados Nov 4, 2010

Did you consider using Trados for this task?

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xxxNMR
France
Local time: 21:16
French to Dutch
+ ...
It depends Nov 4, 2010

InDesign is not more difficult than Powerpoint. The only difference is that the text can pass from one textbox to another, especially if the target text is longer than the source text, which will certainly be the case if your source language is English. So you will have to set the length of the title textboxes and adapt the page length. If your file is heavily formatted, there is some more work than for running text. In general I count the same as for Powerpoint files, that is 10-30% more than the translation price (and my translation prices are much higher than yours).

The client will expect that everything will be ready to print. The number of pages should'nt be neglected, because if it is a book, for instance, each new chapter should begin on a page at the right side, and the total number of pages will have to be a multiple of 4, or 8, or 16. See with your client. Another issue is the font; in some cases, if you don't have the right fonts, the source text on the screen is messed up.

You can download InDesign, try it for a month and test your client's file on it. I recommend you to translate one or two pages and show it to your client before you begin. The CS4 version (.inx files) can be treated wit Wordfast (don't know about Trados), the CS5 versions (.indd) cannot, for the moment.


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Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Thailand
Local time: 02:16
Member (2004)
English to Thai
+ ...
CAT Tools Nov 4, 2010

Since InDesign is a desktop printing (DTP) software and available in PC and Mac, you had better use CAT tools e.g. Trados to handle texts and graphic layout. The job is rather complicated with a number of constraints e.g. version compatibility (seach Google etc.) and it is better to charge by hour or translating + DTP fee.

Soonthon Lupkitaro


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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 12:16
English to German
+ ...
You have never worked in InDesign before? Nov 4, 2010

Then you shouldn't be pondering rates, you should ponder if you should touch this job at all. InDesign is a highly intricate software for designers, DTP and Pre-Press people only. It will drive you nuts if you are not familiar with it. Chances are that you involuntarily and unbeknownst will do things to this file that will drive all the people nuts who have to process that file later on.

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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 21:16
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
I quite agree! Nov 4, 2010

Nicole Schnell wrote:
Then you shouldn't be pondering rates, you should ponder if you should touch this job at all. InDesign is a highly intricate software for designers, DTP and Pre-Press people only. It will drive you nuts if you are not familiar with it. Chances are that you involuntarily and unbeknownst will do things to this file that will drive all the people nuts who have to process that file later on.

After some jobs with InDesign (combined with CAT tools), I can confirm that you need some experience with the software even in relatively easy designs like magazines, etc. The end customer's DTP people will easily detect flaws you never thought of, and if your customer expects a ready-to-print file, I would ask a DTP professional to do the final polishing for you.

Things that were not mentioned in the original posting:
- What level of formatting does the customer expect?
- Do you have InDesign?
- Is your version of InDesign the same as the customer's?
- Do you have any experience handling fonts, linked files, embedded files, etc.?
- Do you plan to use a CAT tool?
- Do you have experience handling INX files with your preferred CAT tool? (And does your tool handle INX files?)

Lots of things that should be clarified before we can even answer the request!


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Vicky Ch.
Spain
Local time: 21:16
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
nuts already! Nov 4, 2010

OK! Thank you all for the advice.

After all, I think it will be more time consuming than anything, so I'll decline the offer.

However, now I am curious, so I will start practising in my spare time and see how I manage with the dreaded software.

Thanks again!


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Joakim Braun  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 21:16
German to Swedish
+ ...
Hourly Nov 4, 2010

Indesign is an extremely complex program that you need to know really well to use productively.

I'm a print professional and the thought of someone not that into Indesign and DTP producing a printer-ready Indesign file is laughable. There are any number of non-obvious formatting and technical issues that will escape someone unfamiliar with DTP and make a top-quality result very unlikely.

Still, it's not rocket science and you can learn. Meanwhile, there's good advice in the other comments: Charge hourly and expect a lot of unexpected problems... and don't even try this if you don't enjoy technical challenges.


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xxxKhrystene
Australia
Polish to English
+ ...
Good luck! Nov 4, 2010

Nicole Schnell wrote:

Then you shouldn't be pondering rates, you should ponder if you should touch this job at all. InDesign is a highly intricate software for designers, DTP and Pre-Press people only. It will drive you nuts if you are not familiar with it. Chances are that you involuntarily and unbeknownst will do things to this file that will drive all the people nuts who have to process that file later on.


I also agree with Nicole on this one, along with others who suggested hourly rates of payment.

I worked for a magazine in Warsaw, PL editing (because you ARE an editor once you use this) and translating direct into InDesign and it was a nightmare. It takes quite a while to get used to if you've not used it before. The boss would very often prepared the layout for printing so there'd be silly things like layered boxes, which I'd only discover after starting to work in a particular text box. And that's just the least of it!

That being said, it's another skill you can add to your portfolio if you do master it.

With regard word counts, there is a way of saving the text as a txt file or pdf and you can do the count from there. Yes I know it's double work, but still, if you've gotta do it, you've gotta do it.

Best of luck!

[Edited at 2010-11-04 22:54 GMT]


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