Wednesday 27 August 2008

Revisiting Translation Work

I’ve all but given up my involvement with language work apart form my Creative Writing in Other Languages and the fact that I read the literature printed in other countries. Then out of the blue last night, I get a phone call from an ex-client of mine wanting some help with the translation of a tenancy agreement. I used to teach their son French and he is now at university studying Spanish and about to do a year abroad in Spain. They are renting a flat for him.

Well, I haven’t done translation for a long time, but I always did enjoy working with this particular student, so I guess I felt I could do this, especially as I have come to a full stop with the tidying up the house etc. We can’t really do a lot more until we have a definite moving time.

And actually, I quite enjoyed doing the translation. I wouldn’t want too many – it would be too much like jobbing writing, but in terms of a bit of variety, it was good. I am a landlord. Too, and I’m trying to get myself out of that. Now that I’ve made that decision, anything to do with landlordism seems easy.

I guess it’s just one advantage of having a freelance life. Of course that all stops for me next week, when my university post becomes full time. The downside of that is being answerable to a hierarchy of line-managers again. The upside is the regular monthly salary. Also, when you’re employed as an academic at a university, there is plenty of variety in your work – which is all about writing anyway, if you’re teaching Creative Writing.

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