After fielding yet another “proposal” to translate a book for a fee I found offensive, I thought it might be time to start offering a special, low-cost fare to publishers and other clients who are looking to save money on translations.
Details of the low-cost package:
- one and only one very rapid one read-through of the finished translation, generally while Game of Thrones is on in the background;
- excludes all research required to identify, verify, and use official published sources/quotations in the language of the translation;
- no attention will be given to house style or other editorial preferences of the client or publisher;
- no second level of fact-checking for names/place names or correction of errors of any other kind (which occur quite frequently, even in published manuscripts, given that publishers today tend to consider proofreaders and copyeditors even more useless than translators);
- translations will be provided exclusively in Comic Sans font;
- delivery of the translation may be delayed indefinitely for the full moon, social events, family squabbles, invitations to visit friends at their summer houses, or translation projects compensated at a rate that is actually fair, which will always take precedence;
- the client is obligated to pay immediately upon delivery of the translation, with no opportunity to review or approve the work officially;
- and, most important of all, just as with low-cost flights, CLIENTS CANNOT GET THEIR MONEY BACK.
In the end, you’ll save some cash but, just like if you miss your plane, too bad: We don’t give refunds.
* The above is not flour of the sack of No Peanuts! The initial concept came from the fevered mind of an Italian translator who wishes to remain anonymous and was then embellished with the ideas of (mostly) Italian translators who commented after the post appeared on Facebook.