I have just finished reading “The Fifth Mountain” by Paulo Coelho. For those who do not know him yet, he is the same author who wrote the international bestseller “The Alchemist”. This book “The Alchemist” has been translated into over 60 different types of languages and has sold over 75 millions copies!
As I am reading “The Fifth Mountain”, I found that it is immensely intriguing and it keeps me reading on to find out what will happen to the main character, Elijah. It is a story about a person finding his own courage and commitment to his higher purpose. All of us have our higher purpose when we are born, but many of us choose to ignore or defy that purpose.
Well for me, this book brings a great sense of inspiration to me. I will follow my instinct and achieve my higher purpose in life – to serve mankind through better communication and education.
Because Paulo is a Brazillian writer, so I assume that the book is written in Portugese and translated into English and other languages. Kudos to the translators who did a marvellous job. The whole book is very well written and the principles behind it are timeless. I believe the team of translators and editors have spent lots and lots of time doing research, translating, proofreading, re-editing and proofreading the content before it is good enough to be published. The team effort and synergy is enormous.
I guess the translators and editors have a great responsibility to the author and the readers. The writing style and flow must be consistent without losing any flavour as compared to the original copy.
We are in the midst of doing a book translation. Hence, we can share their feelings and responsibilities. We will definitely keep you update on our new book launch.
For those who would like to have a read of the reviews or to get the book, here’s it:
Categories: communication, globalisation, language, translation author, communication, copywriting, language, Multi-language, Multi-language translation, Paulo Coelho, translation, translator, translators
In order to be always improving ourselves, we need to read. I once heard from a friend who’s father is a translator, that they have shelves and shelves of books at home for his translation purposes. Not only do we have to be good in the source language, we also have to apt in the target language.
Thus I was actively searching throughout the internet, trying to find out what kinds of books to read, and I stumbled upon this.
It will not serve as a theoretical book to how you can translate your work, but it is a beginning to your work interest.
Of course once again not only do we need to take into account being a linguist, we also need to remember to localise the language to the specific area to which you are translating for.
A starter for your meal, I might say…
Recently, I just watch this movie “Slumdog Millionaire”. It is a very compelling movie illustrating a man’s journey in finding his own dreams, true love and destiny.
It strikes a deep thought for me. We will never know our true purpose until we step out and start this self-discovery journey. We just gonna keep on believing and taking actions towards our dream.
When I first joined my friend’s translation company, a lot of my people (even my family members) start to question me. Are you making the right move? What if the situation does not turn out the way that you want? Are you getting enough to spend each month? Blah…Blah…Blah. Lot of negativities being thrown to me.
I have been with my company for almost 2 years now. Looking back, it has been a very fruitful experience for me. We have led our company to new heights each year. Our team of translators has also grown in size to over one hundred till now. This is definitely a more challenging experience than my previous engineering job. Besides equipping with good translation skills, I also need to do project management, sales and marketing and leading my own translator teams. The true joy is seeing your company and yourself growing daily.
If you ask me, what it takes to be a Successful Translator? Is it…
c) Continuous Learning
d) Continuous Improvement
Well, my answer is all of the above. Hopefully at the end of our journey, we would become a better person to our society and this world. And not forgetting, to fulfill our ultimate destiny and purpose in life.
Well, some said it is written.
Categories: communication, globalisation, language, translation communication, mindset, native translators, self discovery, Slumdog Millionaire, success, successful, translation, Translation services, translator, translators
Many people may get confuse over the difference between copywriting and translation. They are sets of very different specialised skills. Where copywriting is using words to sell or promote a person, business, opinion or idea, translation is to interpret the meaning of a text and communicate that in a different language.
Although clients may seek not to have the text in a direct translation form (which is supposed to be so, given that structures of sentences formed in different languages varies), translators do not regurgitate directly what is being given and spit out in the exact same way as it was in the source language. The translator should take into account the localisation required. The flow of the sentences translated within that paragraph should flow in its target language, and not force it to flow like the source texts.
We should not equate translators to copywriters. Copywriters are creative people responsible for an advertisement’s verbal or textual content, and they are in charge of bringing out the vibrancy of the copy that will sway the audience.
So do put this in mind when you are looking for that copywriter or translator to do your job. Know what you want, so that the people serving you can give you their best.
As you all might know, Singapore is a multi-racial country. The four official languages in Singapore are Malay, Mandarin, Tamil and English.
English is the most common language used. Children are taught in English at school but also learn their mother tongue to make sure they don’t lose contact with their traditions. This is made compulsory by our education system where every child is given a chance to take up an additional language as their Second Language (example Mandarin, Malay or Tamil).
Public signs and official publications are in English, although there are usually translated versions in other official languages. Some of the advertisment, marketing collaterals and newsletter will often be translated into other languages for ease of understanding.
During festive seasons, there are also a higher demand for certain language translation. This is obviously due to advertisers who wish to promote their services or products catering to a bigger market during these seasons.
For Lunar New Year and Mooncake festival, we see that there are more demand for Mandarin translation. Likewise for Hari Raya and Deepavali, there will be higher demand for Malay and Tamil translation respectively.
Sometimes, you may find different languages in a single brochure. Naturally, such brochures are catered for greater public audience. The multiple languages add a unique feel to such brochure too.
We do believe that there are also other countries having the same experiences as us. Do share your comment with us. We love to hear from you too!
Recently, I received an email from a friend. It made me even more certain that I should always opt for professional translators who understand the language as well as the culture. Otherwise, misunderstandings may occur…
Next time when you want translate text yourself to another language you are not very strong at, think twice.
Is there any better way than to “Fall into the water carefully?!” The person who can do that would surely have to take some ballet lessons to have swan like grace to fall carefully! sheesh…
According to Wikipedia, the action of interpretation of the meaning of a text, and subsequent production of an equivalent text, also called a translation, that communicates the same message in another language. The text to be translated is called the source text, and the language it is to be translated into is called the target language.
As a translator, you have to be a language expert in both the source and the target language, in order to understand fully what you need to translate, and what you have translated. Though there are different expressions to the same word, how you manage to crunch those source words and bring out the gist of the message across is very critical. With globalisation, more people are beginning to speak more languages than what they used to a few years ago.
Not too long time ago, when I was on a trip in US, an American reporter was interviewing a group of Chinese. What impressed me was that he did not speak English! He was using Mandrin to converse with them! For the Chinese, and as a Chinese myself, in order for an American to learn Mandrin is way too difficult, not to mention converse eloquently! He was praised by that group. What matters most was that he was able to ask questions very well, and could totally understand what the responses were. He could laugh and joke with the Chinese too.
Then I realised that the world is becoming smaller. We can no longer stand in the current location and speak only our own language. In order to market ourselves to the world, we HAVE to be able to speak the other languages! And with so many people moving across the globe, all the more we have to be able to understand them in order to live and work with them!
Of course it is not possible for us to learn all the languages of the world. That’s why translators and interpretors exist.
Most people are only good in 1 language. With globalisation, and due to a “flat world” nowadays, you would need to bring your message across to not only your neighbours next to you, but also all the way down to the Antartic Polar Bears (i.e. if they can even read!)
And what we are most afraid of is that our message gets misinterpreted along the way. Even passing a message from Person A to Person M gets distorted, what more can go wrong when the message is wrongly translated.
Translation is a skill that not many people have. Although we understand several languages, that doesn’t make us the linguists or the expert in communication! Translation calls for both. And you would definitely want the gist of your message to be brought across the cultures.