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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Open Discussions About Writing » Translating OSC's books

   
Author Topic: Translating OSC's books
MartinV
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Hey all. Not the best place to pose the question but I'm wondering what the people here thought about it.

I'm itching to translate OSC's Ender series in my own native language (Slovenian). The translation itself is not the problem, getting in contact with the right people is. Right now I'm fishing for a publisher back home that would be willing to take this on but it would definitely make it more interesting if I came with word from the important people.

Should I address OSC directly or go to his agent? If not, who should I talk to?

Does anyone have and clue about the translator's work, apart from the obvious translating?

Any thoughts you have, send them my way.

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extrinsic
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Granting translation rights typically belongs to a publisher; however, an agent is also a contact point.

Tom Doherty Associates, one of two Tom Doherty imprints; Tor Books, the other; Macmillian, and Holzbrink, is the ascending hierarchy of publishing agencies in the chain of Tor Books. Tor Books is the imprint for Card novels.

Barbara Bova Literary Agency is the agency that represents Card's literary properties.

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mfreivald
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quote:
Granting translation rights typically belongs to a publisher; however, an agent is also a contact point.
I read that although publishers usually grab international and translation rights from the non-agented, the agents usually hold back those rights for their clients. I would expect it's good form to contact the agent first. Their rolodex is going to be much more effective than yours, anyway.

A bigger concern might be your credentials. You say translation is no problem, but do you have translating credentials? Will a publisher even consider an uncredentialed translator?

If there is a good market for this, why aren't they already doing it? If it was worth it to them, they would probably be well on their way. Not trying to discourage you, but those are concerns you might ponder while working on it, and an agent might even help you get them answered.

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extrinsic
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Slovene is the native language of two and a half million Slovenians. If one percent might read a translated novel, that amounts to twenty-five thousand potential readers. Sufficient to justify publication. Twenty-five hundred is sufficient, barely.

Slovene is an Indo-European language, similar in many regards to English. Translation seems to me a fairly straightfoward proposition. A primary area of concern with translations is their tendency to diminish figurative language, artful idioms, and artful language idiosyncracies. I've read the Ender saga. The language may pose challenges but I don't think they're a major obstacle for a proficient bilingual Slovene-English writer.

A start would give it a go on a sample translation. I'd have one in hand ready as part of a book proposal when contacting whomever controls the international reproduction translation rights. Select a chapter, ideally either an opening chapter or a climax chapter. Translate it, being as faithful to the literal and figurative meanings as possible. And gauge interest from the sample, being mindful reproduction rights apply nonetheless. The translation cannot be distributed to anyone in the public arena until use permission has been expressly granted.

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MartinV
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I want to put quality books on the shelf. That is the only way I know that will convince people to support the book market. You don't know the situation Slovenian writers are in. Why do you think I switched to writing in English?
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