In this my first blog post, I would like to share with readers the story of how I became a Translation Editor. Twenty years ago, I found myself at a professional crossroads, unsure of whether to return to freelance translation or continue working for a Language Services Provider (LSP). While I had loved being a translator, my experience as a Production Manager and Director of an LSP had changed me. I was intrigued and fascinated by what it meant to deliver a quality translation. As a Production Manager, I had quickly discovered that “quality” is in the eye of the “client”. Quality became synonymous with delivering the right product to meet the needs of the client. Ergo, the name of my blog, Quality Matters... I will be writing about matters of quality and why quality matters.
In an effort to figure out what I could do for a living, I tried to distill the essence of what I liked about each phase of my career. I loved the craft of working with the written word yet had become very aware of deadlines, budgets and meeting the needs of a client. Every day for the 4 years that I worked as a Production Manager, I had performed the “final eye” on every job before delivery. While sometimes I helped with content corrections or communicated with translators or clients to clarify issues, I was ultimately responsible for the bottom line! I became proficient at balancing both and that is how I came up with the idea of becoming a translation editor!
It was not an easy choice. While I had no trouble convincing my former employer to hire me as their offsite reviewer, acquiring new clients was a completely different matter. At the very best, my prospective clients thought my service offerings were “odd”. Some of them would send me an editing or proofreading job and later call to ask me to translate a document. “After all”, they said, “you were once a translator”. I sensed that if I accepted translation jobs on a regular basis, I would never be able to establish myself professionally as a full time editor. It took time and effort but I succeeded in creating a niche for the type of specialized work I do.
A translation editor plays a crucial role in today’s world of ever more complex translation workflows, much the same way that a terminologist does within the translation industry. So, what is it that I do and how do I do it? More on that in my upcoming blog post…
Itzaris currently works as an editor/consultant for LSPs and direct clients. She brings 25+ years experience as a translator /multilingual production manager