Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Lost in Translation

Any regular reader of this blog will have recognised that I tend to write a lot about my time spent travelling. I usually take a favourite memory and then use it to highlight a particular area of the writing process. I suppose that this technique has become somewhat of a speciality for me and with each instalment I try to colour my prose with a little humour. Due to time restrictions, I am not able to labour for too long on these posts, but I hope that my readers find them to be well written and free of pretence.

It is my hope that these posts are both informative and entertaining. I also believe that keeping a blog is an excellent way to put in some writing practise. I do realise however, that though my intentions are honourable, there are some who will criticise. There are always people who will take offence. Not necessarily with what I have to say, but with the way that I say it. In particular, with regards to the spelling. Any writer knows that the difference between a favourable review and a harsh one can come down to just a few simple spelling mistakes.

The problem is of course, that we do not all spell words exactly the same way. In the UK, we have many different variations of spelling to our neighbours across the Atlantic. The fact that when I upload my work to sell on Amazon I use the exact same text for both regions may cause confusion. At the moment I get most of my sales in the UK so writing in British English makes sense, but what if things change in the future? Should I produce an American English version?

Take this post for example. How many spelling mistakes can you spot? If you are reading this from the UK I sincerely hope that the answer is none. If you are reading from the States I think that the answer will be considerably more...

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  1. If you are a UK writer, unless you have a paid editor to do it, you should leave your writing well enough alone. You're more likely to introduce mistakes or inconsistencies if you try to Americanize. We don't think you're misspelling, we think you're British.

    1. I agree. Sometimes the settings on my computer switch between British and American English without me realising and I can get confused as to why everything is being underlined in red. I do tend to use Americanism terms in my writing though. Elevator for instance, has a better sound to it than lift when in the context of a novel.