Letting go is never easy. After working on a 200+ page project over the course of 4 weeks, you cannot help but get attached. Or should I say, I cannot help but get attached. Sending off the final version can be bittersweet.
Allow me to explain.
Recently, after handing in a project that had kept me busy for a full month, the client sent back an email to inform me of the changes he had made. The top of the list was his inexplicable decision to replace certain adverbs with the adjective form of the same word. When I looked at the final document he had sent with the changes, I realized that he had quite truly hit search and replace, turning at least half of the document into incomprehensible gobbledygook. When I told him that an adverb cannot simply be replaced with an adjective without rewriting the sentence, he assured me that a “native speaker” had been present when the changes were made and he was confident. “A native speaker of what?” is what I wanted to say but resisted. Luckily most translators don’t get any credit for their work. In this case, I hope that my name is nowhere near the text.
It can be so difficult to release a translation and send it out into the world. As soon as that text leaves your hands it is no longer yours – but then they say it was never really yours to begin with…