So you Want to be a Freelance Translator?

So you want to be a freelance translator? Have you got what it takes? I’m sure you do, it’s just that the latter was a question I often asked myself at the start of my own freelance journey. Having just finished a four-year degree course in applied languages and translation at one of the UK’s top universities in this subject field and having fantasized about being a translator since my teen years, I felt I was well equipped to integrate myself into the freelance world. Boy, was I not only naïve, but also wrong!

At the start of my journey, I was utterly astounded by the amount I did not know in regards to setting myself up as a freelance translator. There were a ton of things I had no knowledge of which left me feeling baffled, overwhelmed and defeated for a short time, however I came through this with a lot of work and effort and now feel I am much better equipped with the tools and knowledge I need to stand out and succeed in this fierce and competitive industry. I must say, setting yourself up is a lengthy and somewhat tiresome process and two highly beneficial qualities are perseverance and patience! Having said that, it is also rather exciting and exhilarating when you start to see yourself making progress, little by little, one step at a time. Although I am much better equipped and more knowledgeable these days, I am still very much on a learning process and it would appear that the learning process is continuous and never stops in a translator’s professional life.

I must say, setting yourself up is a lengthy and somewhat tiresome process and two highly beneficial qualities are perseverance and patience!

Due to the difficulties I encountered in my first few months of setting up and with thanks to @OlgaJeNo for inviting me to be a guest writer on her blog, I have decided to write a series of posts on this topic sharing my experiences and journey with the hope that it will inspire and help any newbies or aspiring translators/interpreters into this demanding yet fascinating industry.

Feel free to leave your comments below and I will be sure to get back to you!

¡Hasta la próxima!


Emma Millar


Spanish/French to English Translator and Proofreader. | Government and Politics, Economy, Environment, Tourism and Travel. | ITI affiliate.  

 Edinburgh, UK

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