Applying Good Writing Practice to Translation: Hot Verbs and Fresh Metaphors
September 9, 2023
“How do you breathe life into a sentence choked with nouns? Simple: use verbs.”
–Jo Moran First You Write a Sentence
In this hands-on workshop, the group will read, discuss and translate short German-language texts exhibiting different styles. We will explore how the translator is also a
writer and what happens at this junction of writing and translating when making translation choices. We will also look into how a text’s history, background research, and overall context can inform a translator’s work.
We will be experimenting with the effect of different approaches. For example, German is a language that uses many nouns. English, on the other hand, is full of verbs. How does this inform the choices that translators between these twolanguages make?
Participants will receive preliminary readings in the run up to the workshop. All those attending should have a good knowledge of both English and German, but the workshop is open to speakers of all languages. The workshop will allow for a range of different levels of experience and will provide a reciprocal learning environment for all.
LUCY JONES is a British translator and writer based in Berlin. She has translated a host of German-language authors, including Anke Stelling and Brigitte Reimann. She is the founder of Fiction Canteen, a reading series that she ran between 2012 and 2022. She is currently working on a memoir.