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Preview: Getting Started as a Freelance Translator

To get started as a freelance translator you don’t need magic tricks, you only need the right information.

Many of us translators have a degree or a Master’s in Translation, Linguistics or Interpreting. We have spent years at university and yet when we finish our education we are not ready to start a career as freelance translators. We simply do not have the right information.

Between a person who loves languages and a person who makes a living out of it there is just a difference: the latter has learnt how to do it, and if other people have learnt it you can as well.

Would you like being your own boss, work at your pace, from the comfort of your house, find fulfilment in running a successful business and earn a fair amount of money for your work?


You can find bits of information here and there. But if you want a guide that covers all what you need to know, you really want to read The Entrepreneurial Linguist: The Business-School Approach to Freelance Translation. Everything you need to know to get started as a freelance translator and set up your translation business is in this book by Judy A. Jenner and Dagmar V. Jenner.


Judy and Dagmar, two professional translators who also happen to be twins, started their own translation business some years ago. While all the other translators were still sending CVs to agencies and approaching the freelance path with an employee mindset, they decided to approach it with a more entrepreneurial attitude: that’s why they created the term “Entrepreneurial Linguist”.

There are many websites out there that teach you how to become a successful freelancer, for example and just to name a few. But they speak about being a freelancer in general.

When I finally found this amazing book I knew I had found what I was looking for: a guide that not only gives you the right freelancer mindset, but it tells you from A to Z how to become a successful freelance translator.



This book will take you through the 11 Essential Steps to get started as a freelance translator (each one is a chapter):

1 – Change your Mindset: Think of yourself as a business
2 – Get organized: Learn to love paperwork
3 – Use social Media and blog
4 – Leverage Marketing: learn what it is and how it can benefit your business
5 – Develop and grow your Busines
6 – Price Smartly
7 – Negotiate
8 – Mind your Professional Development
9 – Give back
10 – Find your Work/life balance
11 – Run your business like a business


Moreover, it comes at a very reasonable price, less than 20$. Not a big investment, but a huge return. Through the teaching in the book you will learn where and how to acquire new clients, how to retain your existing ones, how to promote yourself and to pitch your services, how to leverage the tools you have and keep your expenses low to maximize your income.

In addition to this book, I created the Online School for Freelance Translators where you’ll learn how to get started as a freelance translator, how to create a professional website to attract new clients and how to market your business. Since most business is currently done online, a website is simply vital. Whether you work as a freelancer or you’re thinking of bringing your business to another level and register as a limited company, the first step is creating a website and establish an online presence.

If you are ready to approach your business as an exciting challenge, this book will give you the tool and the information you need. Find the book here: The Entrepreneurial Linguist: The Business-School Approach to Freelance Translation

The last year I completed my Master’s in Translation, Interpreting and Subtitling at the University of Essex. I wrote my dissertation on this book, and as I was going on with the reading I became so excited about it that I wanted to suggest it in every university course about translation.

But as for now I just want to share this invaluable tool with translators who are looking for a complete and accurate guide about how to start a career as entrepreneurial linguists. Maybe you’ve just completed your studies, or maybe you have been in the industry for some years. It doesn’t matter. This book will cover it all, will give you the right information and the mindset you need to feel excited about the profession you are in or that you are going to start.

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