How to turn a beginner to an elitist
Thread poster: Liming Sun
Liming Sun
China
English to Chinese
+ ...
Sep 27, 2008

I am a new comer to this forum as well as freelancer zone. I majored in Food engineering. After graduation, I entered a multinational enterprise specilized in tractor manufacturing as a translator. backgrounded by not bad knowledge on physics,chemistry and machinery, I do my job well. Then some parttime job comes to me, I tranlate for some agencies in my spare time and enjoy it. Hence, I consider being a freelancer.

Looking through translators' profiles here, I am well frightened and even dare not start my tranlation career as a freelancer.Going back home for some more study may be of better help. There are so many transltion elites here, I can not help myself from asking some question:
How you improve your translation?
What kind of books you usually read?
What is the key factor that makes a excllent traslator?
Is there any tranlators else as ordinary as me?

Your answers is much appreciated for its help on the ability-improvment of translator beginners such as me.


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Liming Sun
China
English to Chinese
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Sofa Sep 27, 2008

carry a sofa here for advice

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Mónica Algazi  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 01:53
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
My two centss Sep 27, 2008

Suen,

Welcome to the forum and to the freelanceers' community. At least in my experience, participating in the KudoZ forum is an easy way to constantly enhance your command of the two languages you work in, and to share your knowledge with peers from around the world. Considering your fields of expertise, I am sure you will soon have tons of work!

All the best,

Mónica


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Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 06:53
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
+ ...
you mean sofa like in Dr. Freud? Sep 27, 2008

Suen wrote:

carry a sofa here for advice


It's not THAT bad...

Just keep your eyes peeled and persist. It's a long way to go but who knows...


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Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 05:53
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
We're all ordinary to some extent (or we were once) Sep 27, 2008

Suen wrote:

Is there any tranlators else as ordinary as me?



All of us either are or were beginners! Don't put yourself down - you have a great background, good specialisations. Have confidence in yourself and make sure you do the best job possible so you can be proud of yourself even if you take longer to produce a good translation than an experienced translator.

I'm sure there's a niche out there just waiting for you, Suen.

Good luck.


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sivtufte  Identity Verified
Norway
Local time: 06:53
English to Norwegian (Bokmal)
+ ...
Welcome :) Sep 27, 2008

Id say most certainly!
I'm an ordinary person, yet translating is one of the things I do.

It won't happend overnight...
BUT: As long as you keep in mind, that time is essential in building a career as a translator, your profile present your skills as good as any other!

Also: You are specialized - and by joining here you are most certainly on your way

If you feel you need to brush up on anything, spend some time taking a course or webinar, perhaps add a pic to your profile and just take part in discussions. Earn your KudoZ - and pay attention to the jobs poasted on the Board.



Good luck


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CFK TRAD  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 06:53
English to French
+ ...
Some tips... Sep 27, 2008

Suen wrote:


How you improve your translation?
What kind of books you usually read?
What is the key factor that makes a excllent traslator?
Is there any tranlators else as ordinary as me?

Your answers is much appreciated for its help on the ability-improvment of translator beginners such as me.





Dear Suen,

First, welcome to this community.
You have already been told about Kudoz, this is a good thing to do.

You have (in my humble opinion) to make your profile more visible. You may want to upload and make publicly available translation samples. To avoid any breach of a confidentiality agreement, try to upload a text from WIKIPEDIA written in English and translate it into Chinese, then upload it onto your profile. This is particularly welcome if the topic of the text is specialised. You can put several samples, of course!

If you have already worked with outsourcers, ask them to provide WWA. This point is critical (I have found almost all the new agencies I work for this way, and when they see you have several WWA entries, they don't discuss the rates !) If you haven't tender on proz Adds and, when you've finished the work with an outsource, ask him/her kindly to put a WWA on your profile (and fill in his/her BlueBoard), there's no reason why he/she should refuse.

What books to read? Two series of books in fact, as far as I'm concerned (this is a minimum, you can have other ideas):

* the first series deals with the target language: a great grammar book (I mean an extensive one, rather 1,000 page long than the shorter version), a series of dictionary (bilingual, and unilingual : source and target languages). The target text must be absolutely perfect from a spelling / grammar point of view.

* the second series deals with the field of specialisation. Try to read and learn as much as you can on your field of specialisation. Any specialised text you have to translate must "make sense" for you. Not only as far as the words are concerned (spelling, grammar, etc) but also as far as the topic, what the writer means, and so on.
If you manage not only to read the source text with a translator's eyes but also with an engineer's ones, you are able to go the extra mile.
And going the extra-mile is precisely what makes you a great fellow.

Last point, try to learn about the tools of translation. You have webinars, on-line training, etc. Don't miss the opportunity, consider having a CAT (omega T is free, some are not very expensive, apart from Trados !). When you specialise in a field, this is critically important to create glossaries, not only with the source word / target word, but also with examples, meanings, all you can hop to find in YOUR glossary.

Don't forget that building a client portfolio takes time. It lasts all life long. You never know if a client will keep working with you or not.
But, with the great profile of yours, I'm sure you're on the way to success !!!

Best
Coralie.


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Liming Sun
China
English to Chinese
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
thanks for your advice Sep 28, 2008

I am so grateful for the precious advice from you all. Thank you.
Monica, as what you said, I do find the KudoZ forum is a good way for learning and communicating. I will try my best to improve my translation to find tons of work and do it well.
Vito, Sofa here just means sofa, a comfortable seat with a back and arms. This is a popular word here in Chinese forums. If you are the first to reply a thread, we say you get a Sofa; the second, you get a chair; the Third, you get a stool. Now what you get is a stool.
Sheila, thanks for your encouragement.
Sivtufte, (add a pic to your profile and just take part in discussions), I will do that.
Coralie, thanks for your detailed advices, which guide me out of the mist. You are my ShiFu (teacher)


[Edited at 2008-09-28 02:32]


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