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Translator Resources

Suc­cess­ful trans­la­tors need a broad skill-set to com­ple­ment their lan­guage skills

Keep­ing our knowl­edge up to date is a vital part of our daily work. Hap­pily for us, resources for trans­la­tors abound.

If you know of a valu­able resource miss­ing on my list, feel free to drop me a line.

  • Get Fit for the Future of Transcreation: A Handbook on How To Succeed in an Undervalued Market, Nina Sattler-Hovdar: Interested in working in transcreation? Then this is the book to read.

  • The Pros­per­ous Trans­la­tor: Advice from Fire Ant and Worker Bee, Chris Dur­ban: A com­pi­la­tion of all the answers to translation-related ques­tions posed in the iden­ti­cally named advice col­umn in Trans­la­tion Jour­nal. A no-nonsense approach that I find very refreshing.

  • The Entre­pre­neur­ial Lin­guist: The Business-School Approach to Free­lance Trans­la­tion, Judy Jen­ner and Dag­mar Jen­ner: It’s all in the title. Be a smart trans­la­tor and take your­self seri­ously — trans­la­tors are entre­pre­neurs and should act accordingly.

  • How to Suc­ceed as a Free­lance Trans­la­tor, Corinne McKay: Very com­pre­hen­sive help on get­ting it right when start­ing up. Extremely useful!

  • The Translator’s Tool­box: A Com­puter Primer for Trans­la­tors, Jost Zet­zsche (e-book): Full of help­ful advice on com­puter and tech-related issues. Buy­ing the book means you also receive a free year’s sub­scrip­tion to the pre­mium ver­sion of his newslet­ter, the Tool­box Jour­nal.

  • The Trans­la­tion Sales Hand­book: A Roadmap to Higher Rates, Bet­ter Clients, Luke Spears (e-book): This one may be more suited for expe­ri­enced trans­la­tors. If you’re just start­ing out, you might want to read it to get a feel for future deci­sions you will face. Update Decem­ber 2014: The book can be read for free as an HTML-version on Luke’s website.

  • Diver­si­fi­ca­tion in the Lan­guage Indus­try: Suc­cess Beyond Trans­la­tion, Nicole Y. Adams (avail­able in print and as an e-book): If you’re think­ing about offer­ing more than pure trans­la­tion ser­vices, this book will pro­vide a slew of ideas for pos­si­ble diver­si­fi­ca­tion. I highly enjoyed the book and wrote a pretty pos­i­tive review about it, if you want to find out more.

  • 101 Things a Trans­la­tor Need to Know, WLF Think Tank: 101 bite-sized insights from sea­soned trans­la­tion pro­fes­sion­als. See the reviews by Joseph Lam­bert or Judy Jen­ner for more information.

  • 21 Free Tools and Util­i­ties for Trans­la­tors, Alessan­dra Martelli (free e-book): Alessan­dra tested and com­pared free soft­ware to make things eas­ier for us when look­ing for a new tool.

  • The Busi­ness Guide for Trans­la­tors, Marta Stel­maszak: If you’re not famil­iar with Marta’s work yet, then it’s about time! This is a rock-solid intro­duc­tion to a very struc­tured and business-minded approach to your trans­la­tion career. Marta has a very quiet and clear way of intro­duc­ing big con­cepts and break­ing them down. She also pro­vides links to other resources and for fur­ther read­ing. This book is beyond recommendable.

  • The Mar­ket­ing Cook­book for Trans­la­tors, Tess Whitty: Suc­cess­fully mar­ket­ing your­self can feel like an over­whelm­ing chal­lenge. Where to start and what to do? Tess has writ­ten a book that lets you tackle mar­ket­ing in very clear steps, keep­ing you in con­trol. Choose a mar­ket­ing recipe and get started — it’s that simple!


  • CAT guru review of trans­la­tion tools on Youtube: Extremely help­ful tuto­ri­als and dis­cus­sions for var­i­ous CAT tools.

  • SDL Trans­la­tion­zone: A lot of Tra­dos webi­nars, but also gen­eral topics.

  • SDL Tra­dos on Youtube: (I’m a Tra­dos user, if you hadn’t guessed).


  • eCPD Webi­nars for trans­la­tors and inter­preters: Nice range of top­ics, afford­able prices and very help­ful team. Good selec­tion of on-demand con­tent. (Look out for their spe­cial offers such as 2-for-3)

  • ProZ Edu­ca­tion: Wide range of top­ics. Free webi­nars are often avail­able (char­ity events, ProZ vir­tual con­fer­ences, etc.).

  • ATA webi­nars: The Amer­i­can Trans­la­tors Asso­ci­a­tion has a huge selec­tion of top­ics. Go learn some­thing from them.

  • Soci­ety for Edit­ing and Proof­read­ing: The SfEP offers online courses in proof­read­ing and edit­ing. (Not strictly webi­nars, but close enough)

  • The Tool­box Jour­nal: Jost Zetzsche’s biweekly newslet­ter for trans­la­tors. A free and a pre­mium ver­sion are avail­able (and the pre­mium ver­sion is def­i­nitely worth its very rea­son­able price tag).

  • A Yahoo Group for trans­la­tors. Have job list­ings sent to your inbox.

  • Busi­ness School for Trans­la­tors | Marta Stel­maszak: Marta is very gen­er­ous with her knowl­edge. Visit her web­site to read her blog, down­load free resources, get her busi­ness tips and watch her videos. She teaches her Busi­ness School at eCPD webi­nars as well, if you’d pre­fer a more inter­ac­tive learn­ing experience.

  • Adven­tures in Free­lance Trans­la­tion | Lin­gua Greca Trans­la­tions: Broad range of top­ics, excel­lent guest posts and the Weekly Favorites series pub­lished every Fri­day fea­tur­ing a selec­tion of the week’s hottest topics.

  • Thoughts on Trans­la­tion | Corinne McKay: Thought­ful and smart posts on work­ing as a trans­la­tor. She also teaches the online course Get­ting started as a trans­la­tor, which gets rave reviews.

  • Twit­ter: Get thee on Twit­ter, if you’re not already there. Smart trans­la­tors post­ing con­tent worth shar­ing — what’s not to want about that? Check out @translationtalk, an account with a weekly rotation of hosts chatting about translation and interpretation.

  • Trans­la­tion Ethics’ Trans­la­tion Agen­cies Black­list: There are always black sheep and we should keep our­selves informed of them.

  • No Peanuts! for Trans­la­tors: This web­site is real wake-up call that the trans­la­tion pro­fes­sion strug­gles to gain respect and proper pay. For any­one con­sid­er­ing sell­ing their ser­vices under cost this web­site pro­vides valu­able insights — set­ting a suit­able price for your ser­vices is a mat­ter of pay­ing your rent and of pro­fes­sional pride.

  • Pay­ment Prac­tices: THE online data­base of the pay­ment prac­tices of trans­la­tion agen­cies and other trans­la­tion buy­ers. Access avail­able for a small annual fee.

  • Trans­la­tor Scam­mers Direc­tory: João Roque Dias got the ball rolling by col­lect­ing and pub­lish­ing the details of scam­mers who have stolen the iden­ti­ties of real trans­la­tors. Start­ing Feb­ru­ary 15, 2014, he has passed the torch to the Trans­la­tor Scam­mers Intel­li­gence Group. Visit their web­site to check a sus­pi­cious CV, report a scam­mer or find out more about what they do.

  • Mul­ti­far­i­ous | Paul Filkin: Paul is Client Ser­vices Direc­tor at SDL. He uses his blog to share very use­ful insights about Stu­dio and IT-related issues. His blog also fea­tures a great page called SDL sus­te­nance where he col­lects infor­ma­tion about Stu­dio, includ­ing where to find the many Stu­dio resources online, how to get sup­port and much more. What’s more, Paul is insanely help­ful if you tweet a ques­tion at him. And he has a Youtube chan­nel where he posts Stu­dio help videos.

  • Glos­saris­simo: Are you look­ing for a glos­sary? Look no fur­ther! Glos­saris­simo is a con­stantly updated col­lec­tion of glos­saries and other resources for trans­la­tors and interpreters.

  • As a part of their Trans­la­tion Resource Hub, Inbox Trans­la­tion has com­piled a list of more than 3,000 glos­saries. That page is worth bookmarking.

  • Term­Co­ord: The web­site of the Ter­mi­nol­ogy Coor­di­na­tion Unit of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment is full of use­ful infor­ma­tion. You can find the ter­mi­nol­ogy data­base IATE there as well as the Term­Co­ord blog full of resources and pub­li­ca­tions avail­able for down­load. The Term­Co­ord Unit is also very active on Twit­ter.

  • Trans­la­tion Book­mark­ing: Nancy Matis has made it her mis­sion to cre­ate a cen­tral site for col­lect­ing inter­est­ing arti­cles about the many aspects of trans­la­tion. You can head there to read some of the resources she has dis­cov­ered or you can sug­gest some­thing that should be included on the site.

  • The Open Mic Project: This is an ambitious project launched and maintained by Dmitry Kornyukhov who had the vision of creating a place for translators to gather and share their expertise. It’s a blogging platform and a social network and a repository of knowledge where industry newcomers are welcome to quietly read or raise their their voices and be heard.

Oth­er­wise, check out my blogroll, which fea­tures a nice long list of translation-related blogs.

  • Mar­ket­ing Tips for Trans­la­tors | Tess Whitty: Tess offers inter­views with well-know trans­la­tors about var­i­ous aspects of mar­ket­ing as well as occasional solo shows. The pod­cast is avail­able on iTunes as well.

  • Smart Habits for Translators | A new podcast for translators hosted by Veronika Demichelis and Madalena Sánchez Zampaulo.

  • The Vocal Fries | According to the hosts Carrie Gillan and Megan Figueroa, this is a podcast about linguistic discrimination— and that it is! If you want to learn more about how we judge how other people when they speak, this is the podcast for you.

  • The Editing Podcast | Denise Cowle and Louise Harnby talk writing and self-editing.

  • Speak­ing of Trans­la­tion | Corinne McKay and Eve Bodeux: Corinne and Eve host occa­sional free con­fer­ence calls and make the record­ing avail­able afterward.

  • Troublesome Terps | Hosted by Jonathan Downie, Alexander Gansmeier and Alexander Drechsel, this is a fun show about interpreting and working in the language industry.

  • High-Income Busi­ness Writ­ing | Ed Gan­dia: Ed Gan­dia is a celebrity copy­writer and con­sul­tant (and co-author of the highly rec­om­mended Wealthy Free­lancer book). His pod­casts are fun to lis­ten to and full of extremely use­ful advice, espe­cially if you are think­ing of adding copy­writ­ing to your skills. (And he has the most lovely voice.) Also avail­able on iTunes.

  • Hot Copy | Belinda Weaver and Kate Toon: Belinda and Kate are well-known Aus­tralian copy­writ­ers and copy­writ­ing train­ers. They’re indus­try experts and they’re also hilar­i­ous and blunt in that typ­i­cal Aussie way. So, lis­ten, laugh and learn some­thing! (If you’re strapped for time, they pro­vide tran­scripts of each episode.)

  • Lexicon Valley: As it says on iTunes, this “is a podcast about language, from pet peeves, syntax and etymology to neurolinguistics and the death of language.” It is also proof  that linguistics’ reputation for being dull is completely unwarranted.

  • The Allusionist: “Linguistic adventures with Helen Zaltzman”— sounds good, right? It is.

  •  Translators on Air: The brainchild of Dmitry  Kornyukhov and Elena Tereschenkova, this is a live show featuring interviews with other translators. It’s new, it’s raw and that makes it a welcome break from other podcasts.

  • The Culture Guy Podcast: Christan Höferle from The Culture Mastery is an expert on how culture shapes everything we think or do and he started this podcast to share his insights with us.

  • Globally Speaking Radio with Renato Beninaoto and Michael Stevens: As it says on the website: “Globally Speaking Radio isn’t just about how language professionals can improve our skills. It’s also about building awareness of how important translation and localization services are in helping global brands succeed in foreign markets—no matter where their business takes them.” Interesting stuff!

  • The Worldly Marketer Podcast with Kathrin Bussmann: Kathrin’s mission is to explore how savvy SMEs can best benefit from today’s social, multicultural and multilingual marketplace. Tune in for weekly interviews with people in the know!

  • Lingthusiasm: A podcast for lovers of linguistics hosted by Lauren Gawne and Gretchen McCulloch. It’s a fun, smart show that is definitely worth listening to!

  • Good Job, Brain: This is a podcast that will appeal to geeks, nerds and puzzle freaks. 4 friends share quirky quizzes, whacky word games and a lot of belly laughs. Perfect for honing your lateral thinking and creative language skills.

All trans­la­tor asso­ci­a­tions are a valu­able source of infor­ma­tion, train­ing and sup­port. If you’re a trans­la­tor you should be a mem­ber of one. Make use of them for pro­fes­sional devel­op­ment and peer advice.

  • ATICOM — Fachver­band der Beruf­süber­set­zer und Berufsdolmetscher

  • ADÜ — Assozi­ierte Über­set­zer und Dol­metscher in Norddeutschland

  • tekom — Gesellschaft für Tech­nis­che Kommunikation

  • BDÜ — Bun­desver­band der Dol­metscher und Übersetzer

  • DVÜD — Deutscher Ver­band der freien Über­set­zer und Dolmetscher

  • DTT – Deutscher Ter­mi­nolo­gie Tag

  • IAPTI — Inter­na­tional Asso­ci­a­tion of Pro­fes­sional Trans­la­tors and Inter­preters: Occa­sion­ally, the IAPTI also stages webi­nars (HT to Ben­jamin Barclay).

  • MET — Mediter­ranean Edi­tors & Trans­la­tors (HT Nikki Graham)

  • sfep – Soci­ety for Edi­tors and Proofreaders

  • ITI — Insti­tute of Trans­la­tion and Interpreting

  • CIOL — Char­tered Insti­tute of Linguists

  • ATA — Amer­i­can Trans­la­tors Association

  • NGTV – Dutch Association for Translators and Interpreters

  • MOOC List: A nifty search­able list of avail­able MOOCs in dif­fer­ent lan­guages (HT to Jayne Fox).

  • OEDb: The Open Edu­ca­tion Data­base is an online direc­tory for both free and paid learn­ing options.

  • Open Cul­ture: A web­site ded­i­cated to col­lect­ing free edu­ca­tional and cul­tural media on the web.

  • MIT Open­Course­Ware: Free MIT course mate­ri­als avail­able for download.

  • Course Buffet: A MOOC catalog that lets you put together entire degree paths.

  • Cours­era: Free online uni­ver­sity courses.

  • Khan Acad­emy: Free online courses.

  • iver­sity: Free MOOCs.

  • edX: MOOCs from uni­ver­si­ties such as Har­vard and Berkeley.

  • Future­Learn: MOOCS mainly from UK universities.

  • Resources L’annuaire des MOOC Fran­coph­one: List of French-language MOOCs.

  • Udac­ity: Online courses, mainly in design and cod­ing. There are free ver­sions and paid ver­sions that include online tutoring.

  • Udemy: Online courses at rea­son­able prices. (HT to Valentina Ambrogio)

  • Skill­share: Online courses, mainly on design, social media and the like. Free courses are also available.

  • Canva: A graphic design plat­form which is great for cre­at­ing cus­tomized social media images. You can use your own images, Canva’s gen­er­ous offer­ing of free images or buy images at very rea­son­able prices. Great for all non-designers.

  • Codea­cad­emy: Learn to code online and for free, e.g. JavaScript, HTML/CSS, PHP, Python, Ruby, APIs

  • Lynda: Paid soft­ware tuto­ri­als. Worth a look if you’re inter­ested in branch­ing out and diversifying.

  • Open Yale Courses: Take advan­tage of free intro­duc­tory courses taught at Yale.

  • Har­vard Open Courses: Watch free Har­vard courses.

  • Stan­ford Online: Or maybe Stan­ford has an inter­est­ing course on offer for you?

  • Ali­son: Free cer­ti­fied courses. An exten­sive range of self-paced courses. Take the test at the end and have them send you a cer­tifi­cate of com­ple­tion. Neat!

  • The Eggcorn Data­base: A grow­ing col­lec­tion of eggcorns along with doc­u­mented uses.

Any­thing miss­ing?