Tips

A good original text is the basis for a good translation.
Here we give you some tips in supplying texts for translation:

  • A perfectly clear and faultless text
    • Grammar
    • Punctuation
      Punctuation is everything!
      A professor wrote the words "a woman without her man is nothing" on the blackboard and directed the students to punctuate it correctly. The men wrote: "A woman, without her man, is nothing." The women wrote: "A woman: without her, man is nothing."
    • Quoting the time and the date
      Remember that times and dates are quoted differently in various parts of the world: eg.
      • 12/09 means 12 September in Europe, but in the U.S.A. this will be taken to mean 9 December.
      • In English language countries, the 24-hour clock is rarely used. Instead of 18.00, people say 6pm.
  • Background information
    Translators can be very curious. We want to know everything, and that means absolutely everything! Now you might sometimes think to yourself: surely that’s already in the text? Maybe it is. However, we also like to know the form in which the text will be published (web site, brochure, catalogue, advert, etc.), the target group for which it is intended (professional customers, end users, etc.), the country for which the text is primarily intended (French for Belgium, France, Canada, etc.), and many other variables which give us the precise information needed to make your text a real hit! And so, please give us as much background information as possible. It is an essential part of the translation process!
  • 5000 words by yesterday?
    No wonder that translation work used to be done by monks.
    Translating is an extremely labour intensive occupation which requires deep concentration and in which the translator and/or proof-reader is constantly interchanging his or her thoughts between different cultures. A night’s sleep will often bring fresh inspiration and insights. And so, with all this in mind, you can set a realistic deadline and your translations will reap the benefit. Try to allow the same length of time for the translation as it took you to write the source text. If you needed a week to write a text, try to plan in one week for its translation. On average, a translator translates about 6 pages or 3000 words per day, but it also depends, of course, on the level of difficulty and the layout of the text. Ideally, a proof-reader reads about 8,000 to 10,000 words per day.
    If an assignment does not run smoothly, the checking takes just as long as, or even longer than, the translation itself.
  • Delivery format
    We prefer to work on texts in a Word file. Other formats, such as Excel or Powerpoint files or files in .po or .idml format are possible as well, but remember that such files often take longer to translate and are therefore a little more expensive. If you don’t have a digital version of the text to be translated, you can simply fax your text (+32-9-2786551), but please try to provide a digital file via this web site , or, if you are not a registered customer, via e-mail. This is much easier and makes it possible to give a price quotation in advance.
  • Always try to provide a completed final version of the text to be translated.
    This enables us to complete the translation in one go, ensure that the style and terminology are consistent, and preserve the style, terminology, and logic of the text. If adjustments or additions are made later, the chance is greater that faulty or inconsistent elements will creep into the text, and that is always a great shame.