The Things You Need To Know Before Translating Your Next Book For Business

There are certain things you need to know before translating your next book for business purposes. Such as:

What does a translation cost, will I get the quality I want?  and how do I describe the quality I want? Are all translators equally good and can I be sure that all translation agencies have the same quality awareness? Who should I hire for my  book translation?

What can I basically expect from a professional translator? There are four specific requirements that must be met for a translator to be considered competent. Please note that this is a very subjective list and that there are of course many good translators who do not meet these requirements. 

In order for translators to be able to produce high-quality translations, the following factors should be considered:

  • They must have completed university training as a translator
  • They are only allowed to work in the field in which they are specialized
  • They must live in the country where that language is spoken
  • They are only allowed to translate into their mother tongue

Note: Language is continuously developing, and anyone who does not live within the environment in which that language is spoken will not be able to follow the language development. He won’t know the value, the heritage, and splendor. thereby causing him to miss out on the depth of such language.

 There is no gainsaying that university education and experience in academic use of language also benefit the quality of the text. However, here are some helpful hints to be considered:

Clarify The Scope Of Your Text And Delivery Dates:

How soon would you like your work to be delivered? Depending on the number of words and the degree of difficulty of a text, a translator needs more or less time. Calculate your text word count in good time concerning costs and delivery date. An experienced translator can translate between 1,000 and 2,000 words per day, and an editor can correct around 1,000 words an hour. If you want to have a website of 200,000 words translated, it is necessary to advise your translator or translation agency so that appropriate resources can be kept ready. 

Check Whether Your Document Can Be Edited:

How many different files and file formats are there? A simple text in Word can be translated immediately. Scans with images that contain text (OCR) or texts in tables, on the other hand, must be processed beforehand. Avoid translating PDF files and provide editable files such as IDML, DOC, PPTX, DOCX, etc.

Check The Text For Quality And Completeness

Another thing to consider is whether your source text is written in a way that is suitable for translation, and are uniform terminologies used? The quality of the source text plays a crucial role in the translation. 

The source text should be formulated clearly and be free of any unambiguity. If the source text is unclear, your translator will need more time to translate it. Also, avoid subsequent text changes, as this delays the translation process and leads to inconsistencies. Checking your text for completeness is extremely important and it can never be over-emphasized.

Define Language Variants

It is important to clearly state which language(s) you would like to have your documents translated into. Also, note that there are different language variants depending on the country. Do you need English for the UK or USA, French for France, Belgium or Switzerland, Spanish for Spain or Latin America?

Define your Target Group And Intended Use

When hiring someone for your book translation services, you need to consider what particular group you would like to reach with your text. You need to ask yourself “what is the purpose of my translation?” The desired target audience and intended reader have an influence on the choice of words and the style of the translation. A young targeted group requires a different approach from an older one. The same goes for a layman and the Elites.

Schedule Time For Editing

In the end, after your translator has completed the translation, you should hire the service of a professional proofreader. By doing this, he will put everything through its pages and revise the text.  There is no gainsaying that four eyes see more than two. So plan some time for proofreading.

Now you know what you should consider when assigning translations and which questions need to be clarified in advance. And to make your next translation project run even more smoothly, you can simply download our practical checklist as a PDF and tick off the items!