Lost in translation? Here are some useful tips. - Translation workzone
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Lost in translation? Here are some useful tips.

Lost in Translation

Lost in translation? Here are some useful tips.

Lost in translation? Here are some useful tips.

In a world of more than seven billion people, who speak more than 6000 thousand different languages, translation plays an important role in connecting people from different cultures. Translators act like bridges connecting people by helping them communicate via written/oral translation. It’s a very important, yet tricky job; one wrongly translated word could even spark a war!

Here are some tips that would not only help you keep your job, but will prevent you from starting WW3!


  • Read carefully

Yes, that’s tip number one. Despite being the most obvious thing to do, most fresh translators in their hurry to get on with it try to translate one word at a time and end up with incoherent blabber. Read the whole text. Translate the meaning, not the words. Skim through the entire text before you begin.


  • Clarity

Brevity is your best friend. Use short phrases. Be concise. Keep it simple and elegant. The longer a sentence is, the less coherent it is for the reader.


  • Humor

You have a better chance of scoring a date with your celebrity crush than translating a joke without botching it up. Don’t even try to translate a joke. Just don’t.


  • Imitate the author’s style

In order to get the message across in the way it is meant to be, it is imperative that you ensure that your translation imitates the style in which it was meant to be read/understood.


  • Reorganize

It’s not necessary for you to follow the same sequence as the original document. The way paragraphs and sentences in arranged in one language might be entirely incomprehensible in another language. Your job is to ensure that the original text is understood in the same way it was meant to be, at any cost.


  • Proofread

A good way to ensure the quality of your translated works is to get it proofread by a native speaker. This will help you roughen the edges and make your translation seem more natural and smooth.


  • Consult a dictionary

It never hurts to go the extra mile, especially where you are translating something. Dictionaries are your best mate. Double-check every word you aren’t entirely sure about. A single word can make a whole lot of difference!

  • Anita Kohli
    Posted at 18:09h, 11 July Reply

    I have been following these rules and its really nice that once again they have been revised. To me, a translator increases readership and brings popularity to the author.

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