Tim Chilcott | Tell Us

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Tim Chilcott

Questioin and Answer

  • What is your name?
    • Tim Chilcott
  • Where do you live?
    • Brighton, England
  • What made you decide to become a translator or interpreter?
    • the early study of French, German and Latin in pre-university days instilled a fascination with translation that has never diminished
  • List one strength that you think sets you apart from your colleagues.
    • I have a highly developed appreciation of the rhythms in the English language. I think I can detect a false rhythm in Englsh, especially in poetry, at a hundred paces!
  • Name the one thing that you most enjoy in your translating or interpreting career.
    • the feeling that the word or line just translated, sometimes after hours of effort, is the best that could be achieved.
  • We all have worked on those not-so-perfect assignments. Write about one such assignment that was not ideal and what you learned from it.
    • On the basis of some short poems by the Italian poet Leopardi, I decided to translate the whole of his poetry into English, not realising that some of it was not far above turgid bombast. Moral: read widely in your chosen authors/texts before committing yourself to a large-scale project.
  • If you could go back in time to when you were just starting out as a translator or interpreter, what advice would you give to your younger self?
    • Learn that the sounds of language are just as important as the sight, i.e. speaking and hearing words are just as important as seeing and reading them.
  • Name one resource – such as a phone app, CAT tool, website, and so forth – that you find especially helpful in your translating or interpreting work.
    • Roget's Thesaurus, with all its recent updatings.
  • What's the best book you've read this year?
    • Alexandra Harris' historical study of the weather in English art and literature was fascinating

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