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Old 2012-03-21, 07:31   Link #181
faiz blaster
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Got my hands on some pretty shady rumors and I was wondering if anyone here can confirm or deny them.

Spoiler for It seems that...:
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Old 2012-03-21, 07:50   Link #182
Masuzu
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I can assure you that is not the case...

...or is it, Shikijin-sama?
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Old 2012-03-21, 07:51   Link #183
omimon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by faiz blaster View Post
Got my hands on some pretty shady rumors and I was wondering if anyone here can confirm or deny them.

Spoiler for It seems that...:
No....that is completely untrue. Also, I think this should belong in the light novel thread instead of the light novel TRANSLATION thread.

Last edited by omimon; 2012-03-21 at 08:28.
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Old 2012-03-21, 08:01   Link #184
Masuzu
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Knew it, otherwise there would've been a total uproar no more than a day after the book's release.
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Old 2012-03-21, 08:44   Link #185
ID555
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Thank goodness. I was just about to go strangle some kittens....
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Old 2012-04-16, 04:33   Link #186
Dawn
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I want to express my thanks to the translators and casually ask if you are losing interest or intent on the project

Spoiler for Long version PLEASE READ:
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Old 2012-04-16, 04:36   Link #187
Masuzu
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^ It's just difficult to translate, as for being out of order--it's just because different people are doing it.
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Old 2012-04-16, 05:04   Link #188
larethian
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dawn View Post
I want to express my thanks to the translators and casually ask if you are losing interest or intent on the project

Spoiler for Long version PLEASE READ:
I can't speak for all. But what I've found is that doing it out of order is simply a matter of choice. That's because most of the fan-translators like us who have work or school and also RLs simply can't imagine ourselves translating an entire series which will take us years to translate if say, we are soloing a project. And we can't imagine ourselves translating after xxx years. Remember that we are mostly translating for our own gratification, sharing the parts which we think are best, or practicing our translation and linguistic skills. Sad to say, even the word, 'colossal' is an underestimation. There are times we have to drag our feet across parts and some passages, either because they are uninteresting, or they are extremely difficult to translate. Imagine yourself being able to translate 5 pages an hour, suddenly got stuck on a page for an hour because the author starts trying to be colorful and abstract in his descriptions or go into some obscure reference or terminology which you have to do serious research on. You take a morale hit immediately and suddenly feel that this is impossible to do and may even start wondering, 'why the hell am I doing this?'. The only cure is to take a break in anime, manga, eroge, games, or read another light novel, or even quit translation for good. One of the offsets that can keep our morale high is to translate the parts we are really interested in or the so-called best parts, since we probably can't finish an entire series (by ourselves) in our entire short fan-translation career. In short, there are few translators and too many good LNs.

Finally, some LNs are damn easy to translate because the author uses simple language, or sucks in writing (but has a good story) that you don't care making the sentences good, or is just full of dialogue. Dialogue is really 10x easier than narration for most series. It also differs from translator to translator, depending on their goal for a series. Some take the quality of their work very seriously, while some wants to get the content out fast to reach the masses at a comprehensible level. There are no rights or wrongs. The former will produce a very quality work at the expense of the translator not finishing the series (usually), while the later will sacrifice quality for completeness. In short, again, too few translators.

If there are enough committed translators that we can see a series getting completed in a year or two, it's easy to divide the work so that everything gets translated in order as much as possible. Well, some will prefer by volume due to style issues. But the fact is, most of us are just soloing our projects. Or dueting at best. I've seldom seen projects having more than 2 very active translators since the days of Haruhi and Toradora. And taste is subjective. Try not to put down other series if they are not your cup of tea. You can criticize them sure, but at least include the points which made it subjectively not your cup of tea. So far, I don't see most of the LNs which are translated 'instantly' to be terrible. The only ones I'm not really fond of are IS and High School DxD. And that's just my taste.

Also, don't forget that Monogatari is not exactly a light novel type kind of novel. It is published under Kodansha Box label (not under their normal light novel label), and are larger in size, with each page divided into upper half and lower half sections. Thus they have a lot more words than the average light novel. I don't even want to start on the word-plays, kanji references, and other stuff.

By the way, most of us are not bilingual and know at least 3 languages with Japanese as the third language or beyond.

Finally, a disclaimer, what I said does not represent all the views of all fan-translators.
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Old 2012-04-16, 08:45   Link #189
Dawn
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I had a feeling I would come across as demanding and ignorant.
Please don't misunderstand me, I greatly appreciate both the translations and also your explanation. I apologize if I have caused offense, I really didn't have ill intentions. I wasn't demanding explanations or results, I was merely curious.

It is unreasonable to presume you would collaborate with the other translators but I don't quite see how you would make any progress at all if that was the case. I've only recently started reading LNs so I guessed there might be some kind of system in place but I stand corrected.

I also can't imagine how you find 'gratification' in the task with the explanation you gave. It sounds terrifying.
I wasn't belittling the difficulty of the assignment as my inexperience prevents me from even writing my name in kana.
I have naught but respect and envy for your aptitude.

Lacking motivation to do the boring parts is completely understandable, especially if you do it for fun, but it doesn't exactly make a coherent story; which again is not your problem.
Maybe it's personal, I don't know. No one else is saying anything
But it is wrong to assume that I was expecting the whole series. I don't even expect that from Shaft in my lifetime.

'Terrible' was a bit too harsh. I tend to speak my mind more often than is polite.
'Simpler' or 'series with a large fan base that I'm not part of' would have been more diplomatic. I guess I expected everyone to watch Nise and get inspired, considering how popular it has become.
I was just about to start reading High School DxD

As for mistakenly assuming you only spoke the 2 languages needed to translate the novel; I apologize, but there really was no way for me to know.
I sometimes forget how vast the internet is. Your English is flawless.

Thanks again for the reply. It was helpful and interesting ><
Keep up the good work!
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Old 2012-04-16, 09:57   Link #190
Zetsubo
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Unlike English with our mere latin style 26 letters and systematic spelling...

Joyo kanji (daily use kanji) has over 2,136 ... which you learn purely my rote.

I have nothing but respect for the people that managed to even get the first 500 into their memory.

It is taxing on the memory... and takes years to be remember all the different readings attached to each of them... Japanese (and Chinese ) authors have got some SERIOUS brain power ... especially to pull off all the Kanji puns and jokes... its no joke.

It is so difficult that in the 1800's at the height of the Meji restoration it was suggested that Japan switch language to English or at least the Latin Alphabet.

I suspect that Romajii was even created for that purpose.

I can imagine that during the American occupation it was strongly considered as a replacement for Kanji as well.

It is indeed a very difficult language.
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Old 2012-04-16, 10:23   Link #191
larethian
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dawn View Post
I had a feeling I would come across as demanding and ignorant.
Please don't misunderstand me, I greatly appreciate both the translations and also your explanation. I apologize if I have caused offense, I really didn't have ill intentions. I wasn't demanding explanations or results, I was merely curious.

It is unreasonable to presume you would collaborate with the other translators but I don't quite see how you would make any progress at all if that was the case. I've only recently started reading LNs so I guessed there might be some kind of system in place but I stand corrected.

I also can't imagine how you find 'gratification' in the task with the explanation you gave. It sounds terrifying.
I wasn't belittling the difficulty of the assignment as my inexperience prevents me from even writing my name in kana.
I have naught but respect and envy for your aptitude.

Lacking motivation to do the boring parts is completely understandable, especially if you do it for fun, but it doesn't exactly make a coherent story; which again is not your problem.
Maybe it's personal, I don't know. No one else is saying anything
But it is wrong to assume that I was expecting the whole series. I don't even expect that from Shaft in my lifetime.

'Terrible' was a bit too harsh. I tend to speak my mind more often than is polite.
'Simpler' or 'series with a large fan base that I'm not part of' would have been more diplomatic. I guess I expected everyone to watch Nise and get inspired, considering how popular it has become.
I was just about to start reading High School DxD

As for mistakenly assuming you only spoke the 2 languages needed to translate the novel; I apologize, but there really was no way for me to know.
I sometimes forget how vast the internet is. Your English is flawless.

Thanks again for the reply. It was helpful and interesting ><
Keep up the good work!
No worries. I never saw your post as demanding or rude, or I'd never have replied. Though I occasionally stand up for other translators, these days, I don't bother replying to demands and inpolite posts. It's not so much the language for a number of us, but the time. Compared to manga and anime, because LNs are so time-consuming to translate and it has narration (while manga and anime are usually dialogue-based), which makes it more difficult to translate, we don't even feel negative towards people who give up half-way. Though we wish they will just inform us when they do.
Because LN translations are in great demand, and translators are so few and far between, we normally don't enforce strict rules and systems, deadlines, or even proficiency level so that the barrier to entry is lower. Or course, some degree of proficiency is still desired (my personal gauge is at least 300-500 hours of study for the easier LNs), and twice as much (or even more than that) for the very difficult novels (just my personal preference). Anyway baka-tsuki is a community where people come and go freely, it's not a translation group. This dilutes the quality but gets more done overall. Again my personal opinion but I feel this makes it better than quality groups that die out before they finish a series because of time commitments (you can really find a lot of dead groups if you go search). We will sometimes get relatively not so proficient people who improve along the way because they are more committed or have more time. I myself also have improved a lot. A lot of my past translations were just painful to read. Ability to translate is different from ability to comprehend. One thing that helps me a lot in translation is to be able to grasp exact usage contexts of certain words and use them myself. Previously, I just know a word, but might not be able to use it well. Though I have to be careful because many light novels have bad writing (by academic standards). It also increases my slang lexicon.

I'm not too sure about Europe and US, but I'm guessing most people will have a second language which is usually a European language. For most Asian countries, it's compulsory we study two languages, English and our mother-tongue (dependent on country). So it's easy to infer that Japanese is either a third or later language for nearly all non-Japanese.

Thanks, but my English is far from flawless.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zetsubo View Post
Unlike English with our mere latin style 26 letters and systematic spelling...

Joyo kanji (daily use kanji) has over 2,136 ... which you learn purely my rote.

I have nothing but respect for the people that managed to even get the first 500 into their memory.

It is taxing on the memory... and takes years to be remember all the different readings attached to each of them... Japanese (and Chinese ) authors have got some SERIOUS brain power ... especially to pull off all the Kanji puns and jokes... its no joke.

It is so difficult that in the 1800's at the height of the Meji restoration it was suggested that Japan switch language to English or at least the Latin Alphabet.

I suspect that Romajii was even created for that purpose.

I can imagine that during the American occupation it was strongly considered as a replacement for Kanji as well.

It is indeed a very difficult language.
A survey was done in the past and showed that people who know Chinese studied half the number of hours as people who don't to achieve the same level of proficiency. Ah, I do know Chinese, so even though I still have to memorize meanings and pronunciations, kanji recognition by radicals is never a problem.
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Last edited by larethian; 2012-04-16 at 10:34.
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Old 2012-04-16, 10:50   Link #192
Shikijin
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larethian wrote an excellent post. Indeed, I am self-taught and for me translation was first of all practice to see if I understood the text correctly. I think that paradoxically the more proficient one becomes the less motivation he has to translate. To tell the truth though, I don't still know that many kanji, and I am not an English native speaker either, so overall it took me even more than 1 hour per page to translate Kizu.

In addition there are plenty of distractions. For example the latest novel of this series comes out. Or the anime adaptation comes out, so I have to reread the novel to tell the differences. Or I try to finish reading Zaregoto. Or I try to study some more kanji. And then there are days where I simply get tired of reading and writing in front of the screen of a PC.

I'm not saying I won't translate anything anymore, but at the moment I'm still taking it easy

I also confess it is actually my fault there is a "hole". I spoke with Canonrap, the one who is doing NekoShiro, and I kind of implied I wanted to translate NekoKuro. Which I do want to, really, I just got sidetracked into other activities. As it is though he is going with NekoShiro without me having really started with NekoKuro. And I still should recheck the translation of Kizu for completeness' sake. Not to mention I am kind of worried for the future because Shaft will adapt 6 books in a row
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Old 2012-04-16, 11:36   Link #193
Sleep_ping
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You know, lare, shikijin, there's a reason why I respect fan-translators, and that goes for you two as well. It's the effort that fan-translators are doing as volunteers that makes me appreciate them. Of course, I'm still the idealistic one who will argue back when people give unruly demands because I hope that they understand where we come from. Of course, monogatari here is a 10/10 difficulty as compared to other series.

@Shikijin: Distractions are okay because we're human, ゆっくりしていってね. That's what I feel is important. (And lare, I know what you're thinking. Don't give me that look lol).
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Old 2012-04-16, 21:00   Link #194
Dawn
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I should probably be glared at ominously for derailing the thread, but it would be beneficial if everyone read your posts.

I for one will not take the novels or their translators for granted again

If you are born and raised here in Australia, it is extremely rare to obtain fluency in another language unless your immediate family are immigrants.

Thus, the level of finesse required to translate a complex novel in 2 languages that are not your native tongue is incomprehensible to me.

We, as lazy westerners, are privileged to be able to immerse ourselves in other cultures in our mother language.

Thank you again for your replies and hard work.
And Shikijin? Self taught? I can't even imagine...
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