A good English - Polish translator - qualities of a good interpreter

What does it take to be a good translator? I can speak mainly about translators dealing with texts, because it is my main job and I do not have much experience in oral translations. Of course, in the beginning it is worth mentioning the excellent knowledge of the first (native) language and the second (learned), so the language pair in which we translate. I have read on many forums that there is no necessity to have philological education. I can't quite agree with that. It is a fact that many philologists makes poor translations but to me education is the base on which you build up your further skills. . It is difficult immediately after graduation to become a great translator, but I think that it is even more difficult to be one without the proper education. The best thing is to combine the two things-  graduated philology (preferably with specialization in translation, or supported by additional postgraduate studies in the field of translation) and still evolving passion to translation. Translation develpoed through reading, self-tutoring or by being around natives.

Constant desire of developing  skills – yes, that is the next feature.  No one can rest on one's laurels and say, "Now I'm a great interpreter, give me all the texts of the world, so I may translate them." It is good to maintain humility (that is another feature), and assume that with the constantly evolving world, we have to try to keep up with it, even when it comes to translation. It refers particularly to specialized, technical and scientific translations where everything is changing very quickly and still there are new editions of dictionaries.

features of good translatorText translator should be patient. I will not describe here the drwabacks of sitting in fron of the computer for eight or ten hours, because you can imagine it yourself, and let's be honest, there are no cyborgs amongs translators who do not feel these disadvantages. It is about that "cons cannot exceed pros" and pros are this satisfaction we feel with the finished translation and feeling that we  accomplished a great job. So, if there is something that makes the time in front of the computer nice for you- you have the makings of a good translator.

The interpreter should also know where to find necessary information for the translation. He must be familiar with all the new publications and invest in these publications. He also needs to know how to navigate in online world, on which websites he can rely, and which websides can lead him astray.

 

See also