“Why Do Light Novel Translations Suck?”
So over at the blog MangaLife there was a new article posted regarding a panel of manga translators, where fans could ask any question they wished.
One of the questions asked, although according to the blog, in a much more polite way, was “Why do light novel translations suck?”
The answer as quoted from the site was….
The answer given at the panel was basically that it’s much harder to translate prose than it is to translate manga, and it would cost a lot more to find someone who has the right experience to translate a novel and get them to agree to do it and do a good job.
Well of-course prose will be much harder to translate. You’re not just translating one sentence liners, or dialogue. You in essence need to be both a translator and a writer.
The blog further goes on to discuss their own attempts at translating a series of novels for a publisher, and being promptly told, “The translations sucked”. lol
I think an important thing for a translator, is that he is also a good writer. Because he honestly has to REWRITE the prose into english, while trying to maintain the original. But he still has to REWRITE it in order for it to sound good.
Of course, at the same time, we have seen some REWRITES in the past, where essentially they simply dumbed it down.
So honestly, translators probably aren’t the only problem with translations of light novels, some blame should also be put on the person who rewrites the translators work to make it more easy to read.
What do you think? Do light novel novels translations suck, and if so why? Don’t agree? Tell us in a comment below.
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