My recent voice-over of a commercial for a local art-studio is out. I was happy to help this new business to show itself to the world. Hope they will succeed.
We had two packages of bilingual files, 75 pages each, five glossaries, half gig of PDF guidelines, a whole galaxy of multi-colored references… Also, the eleventh trados, a memoq, a list of approved terms, a whole set of fuzzy matches, and a weekly deadline. Not that we needed all that for a good translation, but once you get locked into a serious project, the tendency is to push it as far as you can. The only thing that really worried me was fuzzy matches. There is nothing in the world more helpless and irresponsible and depraved than a man in the depths of checking fuzzy matches, and I knew we’d get into that rotten stuff pretty soon.
Today translation market is overcrowded with translators and all of them claim to be professionals. At the same time every now and then we see awfully translated manuals, menus, brochures, let alone more serious specialized texts which can be really dangerous if translated erroneously. Sometimes I have to select a team of translators for a specific project and I look through many resumes and test translations. And every time I get very surprised why so many people with higher education in linguistics and translation do their job so bad!
I remember that starting from my school years I have been from the human sciences league. I loved languages, history, literature… But the Russian language was my favorite. Continue reading Are You Sure You Can Be a Translator?
Today freelance segment is growing very fast in many world economies. A lot of people are attracted by the opportunity to work from the comfort of their home and to depend only on their own skills and diligence. However this sphere is not for everybody. Some people are not ready to make this transition, the others are just unable to be productive at home. Anyway if you think to move to freelance, think carefully and listen to experienced freelancers and entrepreneurs.
Sometimes you may get the impression that you regularly contact with your pool of customers and there is no way they can forget about you. However this impression is illusive. Your client is most probably a very busy person and he/she can easily confuse you with another freelancer.
When I am not too busy with projects I spend some time looking through the list of my clients and send them small reminders about myself: I may ask them to leave me a feedback or I inform about my new services or send them my vacation dates, etc.
A few days ago I’ve got one more prove that follow-up letters are extremely important in freelance. I contacted one of my best clients with the feedback request. Guess what… He was very surprised to hear from me and wondered if I was still freelancing. Continue reading Regular Follow-Ups: They Pay Off