Years ago, soon after I started translating, I attended a translators’ meeting in
New York City and heard
a talk given by an executive from Bell.
At one point, he said, and I paraphrase: “A person cannot be both a translator and
a writer. The two don’t mix.” From what I understood, it had something to do
with people not being able to write in both a technical and literary way.
Horror! Disbelief! Nooooooooooo!
What if this top executive guy was right and I couldn’t do both?
That was my dream!
I had a certificate of translation from
so I had validation there that I had what it took to be a translator. Could I
be a writer though? Was my writing even good enough? New York University
I decided to ignore him. The alternative was not something I wanted to consider.
But… what if I had bought into his belief?
I meet so many people who believe strongly in so many things. I find myself admiring their passion and drive. At times I am drawn into their perspective and even buy into it, especially if this person holds a degree in something, or is considered an expert in a certain field.
Most times though, I wonder at their desire to convince others that their opinion is right.
Honestly, I have come to the conviction that everyone is right… in their own imagination. I’m not 100% sure if this is because we need to feel we are right so we can feel good about ourselves.
All I know is that I’m glad that I trusted my gut instinct all those years ago, despite the certainty and confidence in the speaker’s voice. And I think, that is all each of us can do: carry out an internal check every once in a while and trust in ourselves so we can do what works for us.
That’s my humble opinion anyway… in my imagination of course