I love writing. There is no doubt about it. Inspite of being a native Hindi speaker, I prefer to write in English.
Once I had finished Book 1, I realised that I wanted to share it with a very wide audience within India. There are however many many languages in India with hundreds of dialects. I know a few of them, but decided to concentrate on Hindi – which is spoken by the largest set of people in various forms and would be easiest for me to work on.
There are however, very few books on science fiction available in Hindi. The subject and the science would be too tough to convert to Hindi and still expect a layman to understand.
The first option as always was for me to turn to google translate which as expected turned over a complete translation which however on reading made no sense to the actual scene. I then went over to upwork.com and hired a translator. She did a decent job, but the overall appeal of the book was still not coming through. I then hired another person who would do the translation the hard way – pen and paper and the work has been outstanding! So much so that I enjoyed reading my own book in a different language.
What did I learn?
1. Translation is not easy. Obvious Duh!
2. The whole context will be lost if this is done mechanically. Its a labour of love in which you translate the meaning and not the words. You painstakingly search for options and pass it through the sieve of a layman to get the correct ambience, mood and feel.
3. It is as exhilarating as if you have written a second book.
I enjoyed this experience and I hope I will be able to replicate it all over again for Book 2.