American eyes needed!

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Malika, Apr 27, 2011.

  1. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    A publisher has approached me to do a short sample translation from a best-selling thriller writer that they want to sell to the States... The sample has to be written in American English. I'll do my best with it but actually SO many expressions/words are not shared between America and Britain, especially in terms of colloquial usage...
    So I am just wondering. It is a bit of a tight deadline but once I have translated the piece, probably by Friday evening, would anyone be willing to read it and tell me whether any words/expressions are not right and suggesting American English alternatives? I cannot give anything other for the work than the interest of doing though you could most certainly have a copy of the translated book if I get the commission!
     
  2. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    I will!

    Although as an american reader I will also say someone needs to tell the publisher that many of us enjoy reading them in original form too. :D
     
  3. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    I would be willing too - and I agree with Lisa! I love colloquialisms.
     
  4. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    So you two speak Colonist huh? .........Very interesting. Tres bein. Mon frer!
     
  5. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Errrr... Three refried Jamaican beans???
     
  6. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Thanks very much Hound Dog and Step - and anyone else who would like to help :) If you could PM an email address, I will send you the piece tomorrow or Friday. I have to send to the publisher on Monday so if you get it back to me by Saturday...? I'm sure you have nothing else to do, lol.
    Just to clarify - I am translating a book from French and it has to go into American English for an American market...
     
  7. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    PMed you..........I *think* it went through. My message part of the board is acting up a tad lately.
     
  8. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    Adding in my volunteerism here. Different regions = different phrases, the more eyes the better!
     
  9. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    Finished my edits on it a little while ago. Who's ready to drink with me?
     
  10. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Well I don't drink.....but I finished mine too. I scrolled down and no more pages and was like awwww man! lol
     
  11. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    Really? I mangled it pretty well before I was done. What I sent back was a page longer than what I received once I got done putting in my edits and comments. Of course back in school my friends would ask me to edit their reports for them - it landed them at least one grade letter higher than their original when they turned in their re-write.
     
  12. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Hmm. Actually only found one thing to change. One I was iffy about. But then I read odd novels.........based in both places and time periods, along with modern stuff. Maybe I'm not so good at editing for this sort of thing. lol
     
  13. ThreeShadows

    ThreeShadows Quid me anxia?

    Well, I have one American eye and one French one. Do I qualify?

    Nothing like waiting until the last minute to ask for help........Just how long is this book?
     
  14. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    What I got was only a 10 page sample.
    <--- Guilty of "Red Pen Fever"
     
  15. ThreeShadows

    ThreeShadows Quid me anxia?

  16. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Ha, ha - it is like a nursery rhyme (Jack Sprat would eat no fat, his wife would eat no lean). One of you changed everything, the other nothing... :) Really just needing to know what sounds natural to the American ear... Also most of the stuff I translate is a bit more highbrow than this and I am not really practised in the best-selling thriller genre, which needs to zip along at a lively and undemanding pace...
    HaoZi, should I be sorry I gave you reason to break open the vodka?! Thank you both very much... and to the others reading (if they haven't been entirely put off :) )
     
  17. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    I have to admit, I'm intrigued, Malika. Will my side job as a book reviewer count against me? I'd like to help if it's not too late. I'll PM you my email.
     
  18. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Malika

    I like highbrow in an author actually. I have a rather extensive vocabulary......and enjoy books that don't talk down to me like I've not progressed past high school. I have to say I did enjoy the way the conversing part went. Enough that I could easily understand it......yet was believable in that setting. I didn't correct too much.....because of that. Anyone who loves to read........well, the book isn't set in America, so there will be some differences in the way the conversation flows. When I read books set in other countries......I'm reading that book for the storyline to be certain, but it can be a wealth of knowledge about a culture too, which I enjoy just as much....sometimes more. So if the conversations get too Americanized......you're going to lose part of that.

    So it's probably good that you're getting multiple opinions for this.
     
  19. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Actually, Hound Dog (now it does sound odd to be addressing someone like that !), you raise a kind of fundamental question about translation, which translation theorists like to discuss... Should one keep the sense of "otherness" or try to make the "other" (of place, culture, etc) sound as familiar to the reader as possible. How far should cultural references be explained or translated? And so on... There is no right answer, of course, just different views. With this particular piece, the author is clearly a popular read, undemanding, a big seller. The publishers are, probably, not going to be very concerned with what is literate but only with what is readable, easily accessible. And, interestingly, you are an intelligent reader but quite enjoyed the piece... This makes me ponder about how far I should make the piece American... I shall ponder on and thank you for being such reflective readers!
     
  20. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    Can I borrow you? I'm in need of book reviewers.

    As for how to change for Americans, it depends on who his intended audience is, and I was also trying to tell if certain things were French or British, since you said the British phrases needed removed.
     
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