Hi guys. Yet another thing that you may have heard me or some people saying, but let's discuss it a bit. It's not a strange thing to hear from people who know English that they don't read translated books. I'm one of them and I actually don't remember when was the last time I read a translated book. Here is why.
1. Translating for the sake of being translated
You all foreign speaking people know how translation turns out when you put it in Google Translate. Then I might tell you that sometimes our translations aren't any better. The main problem is that whoever translates books doesn't pay attention to syntax. Our language has a very different syntax than English but usually translations seems like words in our, but syntax in English language. It's not natural for any native speaker.
2. You win something, but you lose a lot
This is something I really cannot always blame translators for. Simply the author is the one who created the world and put all emotions in it, so if you don't feel them you cannot translate them. I strongly believe that people who translate things need to have a gift for writing as those two things are intertwined.
3. It's always about the business
Sadly as most of the things today, translating is all about money. To hire a translator is really expensive and it should be that way, but publishers always want to save some money, so people who are hired for this job aren't skilled for it. After almost four years of doing translation at my classes it's a job I'd never do. I don't have patience and gift for that, so you better acknowledge that before you ruin books for others.
I don't want this to be only talk here is a title that has been translated and which makes me wanna pull my hair off.
It is for a story I really liked - Me Before You by Jojo Mojes. Well the problem is with the title here, as someone has translated it with "Tu sam pred tobom" which would be I'm here in front of you, while anyone who has read the story knows that the title actually refers to the time before she met him. It's not nearly the same thing.
Have you ever read a bad translation? Care to share your thoughts about it?