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Hornby Translators

I had carried Nick Hornby’s A Long Way Down to Thailand and back and finally found the time to read it at the end of May. While reading it, I saw the post in Transblawg about Hornby’s Fever Pitch and the missing credit for translation (“der fehlende Übersetzer”). I checked, and indeed, no translator was mentioned. Amazon lets you comment on the image and information of books they show on their site, so I suggested they should include the information about the translator. I got an immediate response from them by e-mail, and a couple of days later they had amended the book info (see Somebody more pedantic than me and with more time to kill could do this in a systematic fashion, I guess.

A very funny quote from A Long Way Down below the fold…

You should try and read the stuff by people who’ve killed themselves! We started with Virginia Woolf, and I only read like two pages of this book about a lighthouse, but I read enough to know why she killed herself: She killed herself because she couldn’t make herself understood. You only have to read one sentence to see that. I sort of identify with her a bit, because I suffer from that sometimes, but her mistake was to go public with it. I mean, it was lucky in a way, because she left a sort of souvenir behind so that people like us could learn from her difficulties and that, but it was bad luck for her. And she had some bad luck, too, if you think about it, because in the olden days anyone could get a book published because there wasn’t so much competition. So you could march into a publisher’s office and go, you know, I want this published, and they’d go, Oh, OK, then. Whereas now they’d go, No, dear, go away, no one will understand you. Try Pilates or salsa dancing instead.


One Response to “Hornby Translators”

  1. Clément Defontaine says:

    I love Nick Hornby and I remember reading this passage a few years ago in Brighton when I was a bit depressed! Very good!
    Anyway, have been reading your blog and especially a post a bit higher up the page because I’m trying to find my “voice” as well! I’ll probably have time to read all your archives before I manage that though!
    All the best,

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