Annika Neudecker :: Freelance Translator :: Creative English-German Translations by Certified Translator (Native German)
Annika Neudecker - Creative English-German Translations
Annika Neudecker - English-German Translator

“Translation quality assessment proceeds according to the lordly, completely unexplained whimsy of ‘It doesn’t sound right’.”
— Peter Fawcett

1.  Are you qualified translator? Indeed. I am a certified, sworn English-German translator and a member of the German Federal Association of Translators and Interpreters (BDÜ), an organization which accepts only certified translators as full members. Furthermore, I hold a US graduate degree (Master of Science in Journalism).

2.  Is German your mother tongue? Yes.

3.  How much do you charge? My rates depend on the subject area and the degree of difficulty of your text. If your text is easy, I’ll charge less. For the German translation of a complicated missive with Shakespearean sentence structures, I’ll charge a little more. If you send me your source text, I’ll be happy to send you a free quote.

4.  Do you charge per word, line or hour? For translations, I charge per source word (i.e. the number of words in your original). This is beneficial for you as you will always know in advance how much you are going to have to pay for your German translation. For proofreading tasks, I charge an hourly rate. My final fee depends on the amount of time I spend on editing/proofreading your text. (If the translator did a good job, I'll have less work and, consequently, I'll charge less).

5.  Do you translate from English into German or from German into English? I generally translate from English into German. German is my mother tongue, and it’s always best to translate into your native language.

6.  What do the terms “source text” and “target text” mean? The source text is your English original (i.e. the text you send me to translate). The “target text” is my German translation.

7.  How do I pay you? Do you accept payment via PayPal? I ask my Germany-based clients to pay via bank transfer. If you’re based outside Germany but within the EU, you may choose to pay via cheque or PayPal. If you’re based outside the European Union, I’m happy to accept payment via PayPal.

8.  How fast can you translate my text? I generally translate between 1,500 and 2,000 words a day. However, my turnaround time will, of course, depend on my workload at the time you send me your text to translate.

9.  Do you translate web content? Can you provide a localized German version of my website? I love translating web content. Depending on the set-up of your site, I can also do the localization and web design work. In fact, this site was designed by me. Just let me know what you have in mind, and I will send you a quote.

10. What is a “certified translator”? A certified translator is a trained translator with a degree in translating. I received my degree from the Sprachen- und Dolmetscher Institut München (Language and Interpreters’ Institute Munich, Germany).

11. What is a “sworn translator”? Definitions vary from country to country. In Germany, a “sworn translator” usually has to get certified first (i.e. attend a language school, pass the exams and be awarded a degree). Having thus been certified, the translator may choose to get sworn in by a court (in my case the Regional Court of the town of Regensburg, Germany). Sworn translators are permitted to certify your translation with a stamp for official purposes. 

12.  Do you offer proofreading services? Yes. I spend about 70 % of my time translating, 30 % proofreading.

13.  Can I send you a machine translation to proofread? Don DePalma said, “Language is a complex beast. At best, machine translation is a reasonable alternative to zero translation.” I agree and would recommend that you avoid machine translations like the plague. In my opinion, they were invented for entertainment purposes only; they are a great source of hilarity, and there is nothing there (of substance, that is) to proofread. If you sent me a machine translation, I would be obliged to ignore it anyway and translate your source text from scratch (which would be in your best interest).

14. Do you do banking/finance/medical translations? No. I do creative translations only. You may want to check out my list of subject areas in which I specialize.

15. I only have a tiny piece of text. Do you offer free translations? I have translated for free before — for friends or charitable purposes — but I don’t make a habit of it. After all, translating is my bread and butter ... and I’m sure you’ll appreciate that I need my bread and butter! So, unless you’re one of my friends or belong to a charity, the answer is a resounding “no”.

16. Do you offer reduced rate translations for non-profit organizations? Yes, occasionally, depending on the circumstances. Please contact me and outline your situation. If I’m interested in your cause, I’m sure we’ll be able to work out a mutually satisfactory agreement.

17. Do you work with TRADOS/Wordfast/DéjàVu, etc.? No. I don’t like working with Translation Memory software. I’ve tried, but found it cramps my style. TM tools are usually helpful to technical translators (who deal with lots of repetitions). With creative translations, repetition happens rarely. So, I’m quite happy without the use of TM software.

18. I am a translator. Are you interested in hiring me? No, I’m afraid not. I'm a freelance translator, not a translation agency. Please don’t send me your CV/résumé. I am, however, always interested in networking with colleagues. So, please do feel free to send me an e-mail.

19. What is the best way to reach you? E-mail, e-mail, and e-mail. I do have a phone (and it’s even plugged in!), but I have to confess that on busy days — with tight deadlines — I sometimes turn off the ringer. However, I wouldn’t dream of turning off my e-mail, and I’m quite attached to my computer. So, e-mailing me will get you the fastest response. If you don’t feel comfortable discussing your translation project via e-mail, please feel free to give me a call, leave me a message and I’ll be happy to return your phone call.

Alastair Cunningham, Clans and Castles Ltd., Scotland:

My German is not quite good enough to judge fully the quality of Annika's translation, but my German friends say it is brilliant and it gives me enormous confidence in a translator if she is constantly asking what is meant or understood by a certain word or phrase so that any nuance is not lost. I would recommend Annika without reservation.

Annika Neudecker :: Freelance Translator :: Creative English-German Translations by Certified Translator (Native German)