Sunshine Abroad

The trials and rewards of French translation and beyond

A How-To Guide

(Not my own.  Sorry.)

There is a lot of advice out there on how to get started as a translator.  Some very nice people have written some very nice blog posts about tidy little steps you can take to break into the world of translation.  I am eternally grateful to all of them for making my life (and, undoubtedly, other newbie translators' lives) that much easier.

The instant you ask about literary translation, though, the mood changes.  People clam up.  They spew spitfire warnings about the dying industry.  Excuses appear: "well, I'm not really a literary translator -- I just do that on the side."

Well, not everyone.  Literary translation is a niche subset of the translation field, so there are considerably fewer blogs and articles written about it.  But resources exist, even online: ALTA's guides are fantastic.  Other people may not have a blog, so you have to -- the horror, the horror! -- search them out in person and actually talk to them.  But they're quite nice.

And then, there's this guy:

Literary Translation in Quebec

He's Peter McCambridge, and he's a newly minted literary translator.  He humbly presents a very frank and open list of rather specific steps and extremely pertinent resources to use.  How cool is that?

I raise my glass to you, good sir.  You do us a great honor.