The Chinese language is one of the predominantly spoken languages in the world, with 1/5 of the world’s population having this as their native language. Mandarin Chinese ranks among the popular types of Chinese languages and thus recognized as one of the official languages of the United Nations.
With such a high regard for Chinese language, it is very important for one to perform Chinese translation perfectly and accurately. Here are some tips that will help you accomplish Chinese translation that will be acceptable for your target audience.
Use Your Tools
There are different tools that you can use that will help you with your translation. Dictionaries, both printed and online, are very useful for translating words that you are not familiar with. Take the time to fully understand the word and make sure that you are using the right word that is applicable for your translation project.
Take Advantage of Translation Memories
Most documents like manuals, brochures, and pharmaceutical labels to name a few, are mostly repeat translations. Most clients provide translation memories of previous translation done, and you can use them as reference when performing your translation.
Keep an Updated Vocabulary
You will always come across words that are difficult to translate, and it would be to your advantage if you create a list that has all the problem words that you have encountered during your translation. You no longer have to keep on searching repeatedly for that term when you already have a list that you can easily browse through for the meaning.
Synonyms will be your best support system for Chinese translation. It is not advisable to use just one word throughout the document when you have other words that can increase the readability and continuity. There may be other types of documents that would require you to use just one word, but as a general rule, you should play with words and apply synonyms for an interesting document that still stays true to the original.
Focus on Meaning
Translating word for word results in a translation that is drab, boring, robotic, and worse, gibberish. Whenever you do English to Chinese translation, make sure to read the whole document first before you translate. This will help you understand the project better and come up with a translation that is more understandable and close to the original.
Identify Your Audience
Never forget to consider who would be reading the document. Your tone and voice would depend on who would be reading your translation. You should sound professional and confident if the document is for executives, lawyers, doctors, and professionals. You should sound engaging and casual if you are addressing individuals for marketing and socialization.
Translation is never a task once you get the feel of the whole process. Make sure that you have fun and enjoy the process as your mood will also reflect itself in the translation. If you are having issues, it is always good practice to consult with your peers and superiors so that you can provide a translation that is perfect and satisfactory for your client.