Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Getting started on the freelance translator’s ladder of success

As a language graduate with a university education behind you, you can believe that you are all set for a career as a freelance translator or interpreter. But this may be far from the truth. In today’s economic climate where in-house jobs are scarce, many translators decide to go freelance straightaway. Yet excellent translators can flounder in the business world of marketing, commerce, credit control, and price negotiation.

eCPD Webinars can help newly qualified translators to get their business started by answering questions such as: How do I set up my business? What equipment do I need? Where do I find my first clients? How do I gain that crucial first experience?

eCPD’s Lucy Brooks has done a great deal of research in this area and eCPD Webinars now has a range of online events aimed at translators just starting out on their careers.

Starting out in business as a translator 
The options are set out on a special ‘Starting out’ tab on the website. From that page you can also download a free spreadsheet which will help you work out your costs and what you need to earn to make a living. There is even a £10 discount if you purchase 3 webinars from this page.

Advice is given either in the form of a recorded webinar or a future event. These include business advice, advice on the tools you need to work with, on marketing your services and on writing a CV that will work.
And in October 2014 Lucy joins freelance translator Lloyd Bingham in a double webinar to help you through those first difficult months or years. They will tackle the practical and legal aspects that must be considered before you start: business structures*, funding, taxation, finding your first clients and setting your rates, as well as the administrative procedures you need to put in place for smooth management. We will delve into some recommendations for efficient marketing, equipment, and financial planning and will offer many resources for further investigation.  The second session will look at further aspects that are not taught on any MA course, such as what qualities a freelance translator requires, how to gain that crucial initial experience and break the cycle of needing experience to get work, but needing work to get experience. We will also look at how to promote yourself, using your CV, social media and a website or blog.

*Please note that the first session will concentrate heavily on the situation in the United Kingdom. Attendees in other countries will still gain from it in general terms, but should be aware of this restriction.

Business School
If you want more in-depth marketing and business training look no further than the Business School for Translators. This is a 5 and a half hour intensive course to show you how to plan your career, run your business, work with agencies, find direct clients and give you an insight into marketing techniques. The next course starts on June 3rd. But hurry, at the time of writing places were going fast.

Advanced Business School
More advanced practitioners may find Marta’s advanced Boot Camp in September 2014 will boost business and enhance their careers. Watch this video to find out more.

And a FREE taster of all this

On Friday 6th June Lucy Brooks will be giving a free webinar on starting out as a translator. Anyone thinking of starting out is welcome to attend. It will offer some sound advise and will also showcase eCPD's programme. If you want to attend, sign up here.

 Communication is our future
Our global economy needs good translators. The translation industry is growing. The pressures are very great and some will flounder without good guidance. Translators who produce high quality work just need to get their first high-quality clients to sail off on the start of a successful career. eCPD can help you over the first hurdles.

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Legal Translations? If you are a translator working in any legal context, this post is for you

If you are a professional translator you have probably been asked at some time to tackle legal texts. Did you feel ready to translate that contract? Or did you fully understand the background to that claim made in court? If not, then help is at hand.

Three categories of on demand CPD for legal translators

eCPD’s legal training courses and webinars have proved invaluable to many translators all over the world. There are courses to suit every level of experience and every pocket. I have viewed every single one of them and have categorised them for you. The categories I chose are: a) starting out in legal translation, b) top-up knowledge for the more experienced legal translators, and c) legal translation in specific language pairs.

Category a) Starting out in legal translation.
Specialising in Legal Translation with Ricardo Martinez explains to newcomers how specialising in legal translation can be a lucrative move. He discusses how to get into the field, and shows examples of documents for translation, the main features of legal English, while also touching on some practical problems. Cost. £15 + VAT for EU customers. More information…

French legal terminology for real estate, copyright law, public international law. Live webinar series starting on 22nd May 2014. Trainer, Suzanne Deliscar. During these three webinars you will learn - in context with examples given – French and English terms in these three separate fields of law. Cost USD50 (approximately £29.73) per session, to include a marked written assignment if you do the entire course. More information…

Category b) Top-up knowledge for the more experienced legal translator

eCPD has run a series of webinars on Understanding English Law with David Hutchins of Lexacom. Topics covered include:
Two further sessions on Family Law and Wills and Probate will be added very soon.
Each of these webinars lasts over an hour and each is full of information about the legal system in England and Wales. Attendees should be aware that the law in Scotland differs from that in England and Wales.

International Contracts: eCPD has invited Ken Adams, the world's leading expert on International Contracts, to talk about the Perils of Translating such contracts. Ken will talk about the confusion created by traditional contract language, which has the potential to waste a lot of time and money and cause companies to expose themselves to unnecessary risk. He will also talk about how

Category c) Specific language-based legal translation
In June 2014 eCPD eCPD invited Angela Sigee and Richard Delaney, two highly experienced legal translators and teachers of legal translation in the German-English language pair, to teach this specially designed course for translators and interpreters working from and into German. The course is in three modules, the first two covering the legal context and German institutions, along with sources and applications, focussing on linguistic issues of relevance for translators and interpreters. Modules 2 and 3 are practical translation modules, one into German and the other into English. Full information is available from the eCPD website.


An excellent 3-part course on translating legal texts between Arabic and English was held earlier in 2014. This course is now available for instant streaming, along with the materials provided during the live course. The recordings are exactly the same as the course lessons, but any texts translated by students purchasing the streamed version will not be reviewed. More information on our website at the link above.

eCPD Webinars teamed with Lucja Biel, the highly acclaimed expert in Legal Translation into and from Polish, to present a webinar on translating legal texts from and into Polish. The objective of the webinar is to raise awareness of legal translation problems, language problems in English-Polish translation and to learn strategies for dealing with them. The webinar was conducted in Polish with interaction both in English and Polish.

In this webinar Gwen Clayton, a freelance translator and lawyer who has worked in London and Tokyo, focuses on translating Japanese contracts. She points out some of the common features in Japanese legal agreements which may cause difficulty, outlines some of the most common types of agreement requiring translation, and also highlight some of the differences between the British legal system and theirs, along with some of the common pitfalls for the legal translator.

We hope you find something in our line-up of legal webinars. Next week I will focus on webinars and courses for translators just starting out on their freelance careers.