Questions tagged [translation]

Questions about changing work from one language to another.

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23
votes
9answers
37k views

What's the best way to show a foreign language in a manuscript?

What's the best way to show a character speaking a foreign language in a fiction manuscript? Should the foreign words be italicized and include a translation? Should it just be included in the ...
3
votes
4answers
673 views

How to convey that the POV character *does not understand* what's said in dialogue?

The general advice is often to focus on the content of what's said in dialogue and just write it in the reader's language, largely whether the characters would use that language or not in-universe. ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

How can I translate my poems in English that it doesn't sound odd/non poetic for English speaker audiences?

There are many translated Persian/Farsi poems in English like The Rubaiyat, by Omar Khayyam, the famous Iranian poet, philosopher, and mathematician, translated by Edward FitzGerald. Unfortunately ...
12
votes
7answers
3k views

What language shall they sing in?

I'm writing a middle-grade novel in English. I have time-traveling kids from 1995 America who go to Ancient Egypt to join the Exodus. None of the kids speak anything but English (aside from a few ...
5
votes
1answer
274 views

Habits and routines for my first tech writing job

A Japanese company has offered me a gig helping translate an Android1 business application + documentation into English. Their staff will do a rough translation, and I will polish it into something ...
12
votes
1answer
391 views

How are multilingual scenes handled when the story's main language is translated into that of its minor one?

Say you have an English book in which there is a particular dialogue where one of a handful of participating characters is speaking French. In this dialogue the fact that he's speaking French is a ...
4
votes
2answers
155 views

Formatting multiple languages while avoiding italics for native speakers in their POV

Looking at this question, I was trying to figure out how to format a small family of novels and short stories that use a number of languages. My original approach went with the above question's style. ...
18
votes
7answers
6k views

How to describe a mythological creature that English has no vocabulary for?

The term is 妖精, which can be translated into English as "fairy", "elf", "goblin". As noted, the Japanese literature uses 妖精 to describe the European fairy. The English translation of 白骨精 in 西游记 (...
9
votes
2answers
1k views

Can one be a co-translator of a book, if he does not know the language that the book is translated into?

I am translating a religious book from language A to language B and have hired a student worker to help me. He is a native speaker of language A but does not speak language B at all. What I ask him to ...
7
votes
2answers
826 views

Footnotes for Translation purposes

I am writing a novel that includes occasional words or phrases in another language. If I use a footnote to provide a loose translation of the word and that same word appears once or twice more on the ...
6
votes
2answers
55 views

How should we plan for translations' space needs when designing diagrams that require text?

Our documentation set includes some diagrams where text is integral and can't be handled in callouts, like flowcharts and entity relationship diagrams. Our documentation is translated, so these ...
5
votes
6answers
3k views

Believable (but easy) archaic English

Do you know any "shortcuts" to translating passages of my story into believably sounding archaic English? I mean, without taking a full school course? A crash course? An automatic service? A phrase ...
5
votes
2answers
5k views

What software applications are used for translating a book?

I'm translating a book. I would like to do it with a software that allows me to see the original one in a window and my translation in the other with an auto-scroll down. Can I do it with LibreOffice? ...
4
votes
1answer
97 views

How can we make images with (necessary) text more translatable mechanically?

Our documentation set includes some diagrams, such as entity relationship diagrams and flowcharts, where text is integral and cannot reasonably be handled in callouts. Our documentation is translated ...
4
votes
2answers
324 views

Scenes with different languages spoken after translation

So... imagine you have a story in your native language written down, with protagonists that speak this language and no problem at all, except a bunch of scenes where your protagonist meets someone who ...
2
votes
2answers
914 views

Tenses I should use in a translated-novel

I have been translating a novel that is originally written in my native language into English. Considering that the book's plot is the author's experience of a life that has happened in the past, I've ...
-1
votes
1answer
1k views

Software that converts handwriting to computer text [closed]

Wondering if anyone had recommendations for software that converts handwriting (fairly legible penmanship) to computerized text? Any hiccups or bottlenecks in the process/workflow? Sensitivity to ink ...
8
votes
2answers
556 views

How many liberties can one take with syntax and grammar rules when writing poetry?

I've begun writing a small fable in verse for my girlfriend, whereas she gets one part of the story for each day before Christmas starting December 1st. She likes it, however she tells me nearly each ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

How much should I expect to charge someone for translation services?

I have been approached by someone to translate a foreign language into (written) English. What is an acceptable rate (preferably in UK currency, but US would be fine) per thousand words that I could ...
4
votes
4answers
173 views

How to write Arabic in dialogue for an English piece?

I have a character who is a Syrian refugee to Canada. His first language is Arabic, but he's lived in Canada long enough that he's learned English and uses this as his primary spoken language. On ...
3
votes
1answer
491 views

Show the translation of foreign language thoughts in a manuscript?

Background Part of an English story takes place in rural South America, where Spanish is the native tongue. Problem A Spanish character thinks to himself. In English (i.e., in the story's native ...
3
votes
1answer
76 views

Showing the transition of language comprehension change

This is a followup question to What language shall they sing in? I'm writing a middle-grade novel in English with time-traveling kids from 1995 America who go to Ancient Egypt to join the Exodus. My ...
2
votes
1answer
433 views

How do publishers handle bilingual novels?

I am currently co-writing a novel. It is written one chapter in Greek and one chapter in English. We are planning to translate the whole text in both languages, and when we are finished there will be ...
1
vote
3answers
306 views

Untranslated passages in translated works

I constantly find in translations of classic works untranslated passages. In English translations of Russian novels I find dialogue or narrative in French - as if the English-reading public, who ...