Translator's Talk

Translator’s Thoughts

I tried to keep it short and sweet, I’m sorry if it feels ranty.

Wanted to do this after the translations finish, or on Thanksgiving Day, but it’s already over *laughs* It’s about a month since this started, and nearly 1/3 of RKO is cleared… will probably regret this the instant I press ‘Publish’, but here I go anyway.

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I’ve always been reading for as long as I remember.

As an over-imaginative child, books were the doors to other worlds. Then I found manga. Japanese light and web novels. Xianxia, wuxia, xuanhuan.

Hanging out with friends is fun, drawing is fun, gaming is fun, I have many interests and they’re all fun, but reading was what really stole my heart. When I fell really ill and thought I was going to die, the stories that I haven’t read to the end came to mind and I felt regret. Before I breathe my last, I want to read. When I become a grandma, what I hold in my hands as I sit on a rocking chair won’t be knitting tools, but a book.

I really didn’t think I’ll enjoy translating so much.

Always craving delicacies produced from the hard work of others, it’s already long become a routine. Rejoice at a new release, read, occasionally thank them, comment if something struck my heart, then yearn for the next release while hanging from the cliff. I thought that would be an endless loop.

I never thought I’ll step from being a ‘reader’ to ‘one who gives others the joy of reading’. I love writing and publishing my own book had always been one of my dreams, but I didn’t realise there was another path right here. Okay, that was kinda narcissistic, huh *laughs*.

I’m a whimsical person.

( No worries, I won’t drop what I picked up unless something big happens. )

Even RKO was picked up on a whim. I didn’t think too deeply before translating. In other words, the bridge between a reader and a translator, one I thought I’d never step onto, was crossed just like that, on a whim *laughs*. Chapter 3 had actually been translated for a while. I didn’t know whether to upload it or not, if anyone would even care to read this newbie translation, and it was highly embarrassing. But in the end, on a whim, it was released.

Of course, there’s always two sides to everything. “Fishcakes, how do I translate this *cries*”, “Why’s there still mistakes on the 3rd friggin’ check-through!!!!” or “Forget it!!” (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻.

I always have this inkling that something was lost during translation. That the meaning is there, but some of the atmosphere, the thoughts, the feel wasn’t ‘translated’. I hope to get better, but I wonder if there will ever be a ‘perfect’ translation?

Recently my eyes gained a new ability,『 Word Stealing 』. Whenever I read stuff, “AH, I should have phrased it that way!” or “Oooh, that works too, huh”, things like that go through my mind.

So, before I knew it, translating had already become a huge part of my life.

Without many coincidences and inevitable events, none of this would have come about. Sometimes your words open my eyes to details I never noticed. Be it mistakes I missed, different interpretations, etc. I even got to talk to a few people who were, to me, the ‘Takane no Hana’ I’ve always respected. Therefore I feel boundless gratitude to the many, many people I’ll never come to meet or know in real life, but yet have affected me greatly.

And so, if you have a syosetu account, or if you know how to create one, I hope that you’ll give your blessings to the author, let her know what you feel about her work, show her some appreciation. I think, to any author, knowing that someone out there likes their work is the greatest gift.

I hope that someday one of the teasers here will be the string that connects to a new translator, the way senpai’s did for me. Reader or translator or passer-by, as xianxia stories say, we’ve been connected by a thread of Karma. Thank you for coming here and I hope that when you leave, you’ll have a bit more of that something in your heart.

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7 thoughts on “Translator’s Thoughts

  1. Thanks for your hard work! I also enjoy reading translations and web stories. In fact, my dream is to be a translator, though I’ll have to become proficient in Japanese first (lol). We’re all part of the infinite loop of readers and translators (+editors and proofreaders).

    (Ps. That last line of mine was cheesy af, don’t judge)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Amazing! Gosh. So nice. We all enjoy your hard work. Fans to the ever so awesome you! Reading is love. Reading is life. Reading is so much fun. ps: I in the future would like to be a writer as well! So much fun. To get your stories out there and that feeling that what you write. Other people like as well. (Ps ps: I have a nobody site. And jus roost some random stories there. But if you are ever in the mood! Come read? >.> I think they are pretty ok. Kya. I’m just a selfish amateur (•~•*) orz)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you so much!!! Without translators like you…us readers would never be able to enjoy a story that was made thousands of miles away from home!!! I’m also very thankful for that fact! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It’s been several montg since you made this post but I found it today since I’ve discovered your translation recently.
    First, let me say thank you for your hard work. I’ve read so many stories on the internet, I am so grateful to the translators who work hard to make such a think possible.
    I can completely retaliate to your message and feeling, about the fact of having several hobbies but reading still comes first, or about realizing there are others path aside from writing that lead to create a book.
    So here is the mean point of my message : I wish you to be happy while following such a nice path. Thanks you again

    Liked by 1 person

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