I'm a native speaking german and learned english in school. So I will probably never be writing and speaking english on the same level as a native speaker or as I do in german. That's why I write in german. I wrote some stories and published them myself for free reading on my website. Now I think, if I should translate them myself into english, to gain a bigger audience? Is that a good idea, or would my terrible english actually a downside and I should stay with german?


1 Answer 1


Stick with what you know. If your English isn't fluent, you're most likely going to annoy more readers than you attract. This is why when a publishing house puts out a book in another language they hire a professional to do it instead of having the author try and do it. Translation can be confusing and there aren't always words that translate accurately, so it takes someone who knows both languages in and out to do accurate translations. So I would recommend sticking to German since that's the language you're fluent in.

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    I second this. On the other hand, since Mnementh knows the language, he should assist or edit the translation in order to best capture the subtleties and nuances of the original work. Jan 7, 2011 at 18:17
  • @Shiny just what I wanted to add: few authors did their own translations, but a number do/did check/assist with translations of their works into languages they knew. Jan 8, 2011 at 18:19
  • One more thing to add to the OA: pro translators are, well, pros... they do that a lot faster than you can (if you're not trained/experienced). One reason for that is that they usually get (under)paid per page, so the faster they do it, the better the rate per hour. ;-P Jan 8, 2011 at 18:21
  • He should assist, sure, but judging from the level of English displayed in his posts, I don't think he'd be able to do the entire thing himself accurately and to a level that native English speakers wouldn't get frustrated reading. Jan 9, 2011 at 0:47

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