Final Thoughts

Though this is my final blog, I am still not done with script. My main roadblock is that I decide when to finish the project – there is no exact deadline. After editing it several times I have reached a point where I am not completely satisfied but I don’t know if I ever will be. I have also read it so many times that the thrill of translation is not as present. Earlier this week I decided that I will edit it one final time and then email it to Esteban. Now I just have to find the motivation for that final read-through.

Ideally, I would have a more experienced translator edit the entire script for me. At the same time, I am providing the translating service to Esteban for free, so if he feels it needs to be perfected, he can pay for someone to clean up my translation. So I don’t feel too guilty. I think, or hope, that even though my work isn’t perfectly fluid, it does reflect the essence of the story. Until I travel to a Spanish-speaking country (three weeks!), I can’t recreate the colloquialisms or phrases that are unique to the language or culture. I also felt uncomfortable trying to translate parts of the script that deal directly or subversively with social issues in Cuba that are unfamiliar for me. Race was an obvious issue in the script, and I didn’t feel confidant in translating the word “negros” into English – I don’t know if the racial titles used in Cuba are the same as those used in the United States. I’m thinking that a trip to Cuba will be necessary for my understanding of their social structure, right?

Overall, this project has been ideal. I’ve spent my summer doing what I love and being paid in scholarship money all on my own schedule. The translation was a lot more creative and engaging than I had imagined. Thought it did take a lot of time, I was able to work on it in such a relaxed manner that I never felt stressed or rushed. I could imagine that translation work could be a lot more stressful when pressed for time. I could imagine using translating skills in a future job – with literature, an NGO, or even in a court. If only William and Mary could fund me for all future projects! However, after a year in Spain during which ill achieve fluency (right?), I’ll hopefully be able to market myself better.

I’d like to thank my advisor, Anne Marie Stock and Esteban Insausti for trusting me with this project. Professor Stock has been incredibly generous in donating her time and energy to my various pursuits. I could not have completed the project without her help and without the financial assistance of William and Mary.