If you mean business, become a better writer
Translators are writers, they say. We ought to be, but are we really? The way we write is the first thing prospective clients notice about us, from our websites and profiles to how we pen an email. Written mastery of our target language is a huge sales weapon, a vital way to add value for our clients, and a serious tactic for prolonging our careers (to keep the machines at bay). But how many of us can say that our writing is all it ought to be? Is your prose polished or pedestrian? Is your copy crisp or just cr*p? Our translations should – of course – be accurate, complete and correct, with all the commas in the right places.
But we can do better. We can strive for a pithy phrase rather than settling for the mediocrity of cliché. We can find the words that inform, persuade, impress and even entertain. And we can craft beautiful, effective texts that give our clients and their readers what they need. Honing our writing is a way we can all raise the bar in our profession. You up for it?
Oliver Lawrence is a Chartered Linguist, MCIL and MITI who has been purveying Italian-to-English translations since 2008, latterly under the name Incisive English. He specialises in translating and transcreating tourism texts and marketing copy – and even writing it, on a good day – from his base in Norma, not far from Rome. He delights in reading crisp, elegant and (of course) incisive English and strives to produce just that for his clients and their readers. He has given webinars and presentations on tourism translation, creative translation, ambiguity and clear writing, including an online course with eCPD Webinars.
This 20-minute talk is scheduled for Friday, 5 May, 2017, followed by a short moderated Q&A session. You can attend this session by purchasing a 1-day or a 2-day pass to BP17.