Translation quality Archive

How to decide if a translation specialization is viable?

A student in my online course asks: How do I decide if a translation specialization is viable? Hmm, interesting question, and one that nearly all freelancers have to grapple with at some point. Short answer: nearly any specialization is viable, depending on your marketing zeal and income needs. Longer answer follows. When you’re looking at

Shouting and moaning about bad clients: productive, or not?

This post is inspired by something Ted Wozniak posted on Facebook, linking to S├ębastien Devogele’s blog post “The Rate Rant.” The issue: translators who complain about bottom-feeding agencies that pay low rates, endlessly try to drive down prices even further through fuzzy match discounts, treat translators as a cog in the production machine, etc. Some

Choosing your translation specializations

About 11 years ago, I went on my first informational interview with a translation company. The project manager’s first question, “What are your languages?” was one that I expected. Her second question, “And what are your specializations?” caught me completely off guard. Specializations?? You mean it’s not enough that I speak another language? Well, as

Why do some freelance translators fail?

I’m not a great “tough love” advice-dispenser, but I’m going to give it a try. I work with a lot of beginning translators in my online course (shameless self-promo: the next session starts on April 3 and there are four spots left!). When I follow up with students over the months and years after they

The software companies respond!

Ahead of last week’s ATA conference, I asked readers what you would like to tell your translation tool vendor. And with 27 comments (although some of those were me!), the post generated a lot of activity and excellent feedback. I then compiled those comments into a three-page document and presented the results at an informal