Perfect Superstar Ramblings

Hey guys,

So I will be breaking up the post into these topics: translating team status, Qidian concerns, update schedule, and potential donations.

TL;DR (for the slackers) I am now the only active translator and editor. Qidian is a big concern for me, as a translator. The update schedule is dependent on me, as the only translator, so it may be less consistent. If I post a chapter it will likely be on a set day of the week.

First up, the translating team status. Our team formally consists of 3 translators, DRZero, MZDriggle (aka my brother) and myself. DRZero, has been away and haven’t answered any of my messages since the end of January. MZDriggle, is busy with college work and unable to help in any meaningful way. That being said, I am now the only active translator. The editing team consists of me and XTB. However, XTB had real life obligations and won’t be back for a while. And the three proofreaders are still here.. So I am the sole translator and editor with three proofreaders. So, um, this becomes rather awkward…(and abusive QAQ) That being said, the update schedule is severely affected by the lack of personnel.

Next, Qidian concerns. To be completely transparent, if you didn’t know already, this is a Qidian novel. The public connotation to Qidian is largely negative and there are a number of concerns about whether or not there is any point in translating the novel if it will eventually get picked up by Qidian anyways. My main concern, being new to the translation scene, is whether or not the project will get in trouble for translating a novel by Qidian. That being said, I will continue to periodically update the novel. Its just much more motivating to know that there isn’t actually a risk in translating it. If I could get some opinions from you guys, that would be great.

This brings us to the next topic of discussion – update schedule. Like I mentioned before, I am the sole translator and editor. Prior to DRZero going AWOL, we were debating the topic of whether or not to switch to purely MTL then editing that MTL. As fluent Chinese speakers/readers, we would be able to deal with the weird/bad translations that the MTL provides. This, theoretically, would make translating faster and, subsequently, I could drop chapters faster. How do you guys feel about replacing speed with quality? I, personally, don’t feel that the quality will change too much but I’m willing to see the public opinion first. As for the update schedule itself, since it is just me, the update schedule is rather volatile based on my tests and deadlines. As such, I won’t be able to promise any chapters but, if I do release a chapter, it will be Sunday night (my time).

I would like to conclude with the topic of potential donations. I think that it would be unfair to open up donations for chapters if I still can’t maintain a consistent release schedule. However, the reason that I am bringing this up is because I am currently evaluating my options for the summer. I usually get a job during the summers and work ~35 to 40 hours a week. As you can imagine, this doesn’t bode well for a steady and abundant release schedule. However, if I manage to generate significant revenue from translating, I would be able to switch to part time and dedicate more time to actual translations. As a high school senior going into college, money is tight due to the high tuition costs in America. I have been accepted to a number of colleges with varying amounts of scholarship money but any additional money would help. Therefore, working a summer job would be my best bet to alleviate some of the financial burden of college. Not much to discuss here just wanted to make you guys aware of the thinking process behind it. If things work out well, I will bring up the topic again in a month of so.

For those of you guys that read through the entire post, thank you. I look forward to the comments for this post and will be replying to each one. If you prefer to privately message me, I am available through Discord, DarkShadowScorch#3926.

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Comments (19)

  1. Anonymous · Mar 18, 2018

    just wanted to let you know thank you for translating this..and the machine translating is fine as long its barely understandable

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  2. AL13 · Mar 16, 2018

    Mtl.. more consistent updated and not burdening translator, besides this kind of book USUALLY (not everytime) is MTL friendly... especially with This is Qi, if u do the quality translation they will use ur work sooner or later, you can see from CD works, they just take it and pretend nothing happen, so save ur time and the hardwork.

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    • DarkShadowScorch · Translator · Mar 17, 2018

      Thanks for letting me know your thoughts. I agree that modern books are certainly less problematic for MTL but still a couple problems here and there.

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  3. anasia · Mar 15, 2018

    Hello there!
    An other lurker here.😅

    First thankyou for letting us know what is happening in details.
    You probably feel more pressure now that you are the only translator and now editor too. But dont worry, we(I) understand that less translators=less frequent/regular chapters☺
    On a side note I hope everything is okay for DRZero and that he/she is just busy/ lost interess but healthy!

    For Qidian.. Well I cant say I know much but from what I've read from other translators it seems like accepting donation can be a problem. As you technically dont have the rights of the story. But then again I haven't heard of anyone actualy getting in trouble or anything for that. Some translators cooperate/work with/for them but I heard the pay is really low and all the rights of your previous work go to them(but I dont know the facts). Also as kirindas said they seem to go for popular project and are pretty forceful when they make the decision. But this novel doesn't get a lot of attention so I actually wouldn't worry about them. Yes after all I've said i dont really worry about this project being taken over by Qidian😛

    Now for MTL, like others comments, I dont think I would mind as long I can understand what is happening, but if you really want an opinion we would need to see the comparison first, just like you have seems to plan to do.☺

    For donation I am too an irregular donnor so I personally cant help you much. BUT I've seen on an other site that they have set a patreon and goals; so for X amount of money(monthly plege) they have x amount of chapter, and when they reach the next goal they add more weekly chapters. So if you set a patreon you would be able to see by summer if it possible to work less hours. They also gave different advantage(advance chapter amount) depending on how much you pledge. Just an idea.

    Well that is it for my brainstorming!
    This is the longest post I ever did!, but anyways. Have a good day!!🌞

    P.S. congratulation for getting accepted in different college and getting illegible to scholarships!! I hope you can go wherever you want!!!

    P.P.S. there may be many mistakes as this is not my first language, sorry about that😅
    With love❤

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    • DarkShadowScorch · Translator · Mar 16, 2018

      Thank you so much for letting me know what you think. I admit I’m feeling some pressure but it really stems from the fact that I originally joined to help rather than become the lead of the project so I admit it is rather stressful making decisions without the input of others. As for your comments trying to reassure me about Qidian, I really don’t know if I should be offended or relieved. “This novel doesn’t get a lot of attention” QAQ (I’m kidding btw lol). After trying MTL, I feel like I’m doing a hybrid. If I feel the sentence fits, I go with it. If not, I do it from scratch. A new chapter will be released soon. A Patreon won’t be viable for me until I get steady release but I get and understand your point. Thank you so much for the long post and I enjoyed reading over it and cringing at the grammar mistake. At least your writing is legible ;) (illegible is used wrong). You’re off to a great start language wise and I’m glad that you took the time to type this all out even though it wasn’t your first language.

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  4. Darkwood · Mar 14, 2018

    For going to an edited mtl, it might be good to see a chapter that has been translated by both methods to see the differences between them. Either way keep up the good work!

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    • DarkShadowScorch · Translator · Mar 15, 2018

      Thank you for letting me know. Look forward to the new chapter! MTL incoming!

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  5. Olivia · Proofreader · Mar 13, 2018

    Did you just call me abusive??? *I am no longer a proofreader*

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    • Ars · Editor · Mar 13, 2018

      *pats Olivia*

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    • DarkShadowScorch · Translator · Mar 15, 2018

      *marks as spam* Yes.

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      • Anonymous · Mar 17, 2018

        Say bye bye to your proofreader.

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  6. Christiine · Mar 12, 2018

    For me i do donate but a small amount. Translate at your own pace. Thanks.

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    • DarkShadowScorch · Translator · Mar 13, 2018

      Yep, like I mentioned in the post, I’m not planning on opening donations for a while. It’s just a thought I wanted to toss out. Thanks for commenting!

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  7. bookboy · Mar 12, 2018

    thanks for your work. i dont mind machine translation as long as it is fluid. and as a chinese speaker, can you tell me why so many novels screw up number amounts so much? its like its lost in translation. one minute it will be 100,000. then next its one billion???? and then back to one million?

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    • DarkShadowScorch · Translator · Mar 13, 2018

      I mean, sometimes it’s the author’s fault and it could be simple typos. Not too sure where the difficulty lies honestly but yeah...

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  8. lurkerteacup · Mar 12, 2018

    Lurker here, I rarely rarely comment (anywhere). Anyway, just wanna thank you for taking the time out of your life to do this. Other people get mad at slow translation speed, but then they should just learn Chinese and they can read it as fast as they want, ne~? Considering you're doing this for free as a hobby for the pleasure of us degenerates, we good Scorchy, we good.

    Qidian... I don't think you have worries right now. Continue as is, and if they contact you then decide at that time. I'm not sure how QI gets their translators. They seem to be online peeps who also just do this as a hobby but partnered up with QI and are posting their translations on QI instead? I'm not really sure on this... The novels on QI have different update schedules depending on translators too so I don't think they're getting paid on the regular.

    MTL - I'm ok with this. I think a lot of people would be as well. Some novels I've read that were MTL'd I know there are things lost in translation but just being able to read the plot moving forward is nice (and not have a migraine from trying to read direct MTL myself).

    Donations - I think it's only fair to accept donations if you're able to churn out the chapters being paid for. As far as frequency of donations, don't count on this as a replacement for your summer job. You won't be able to get enough donations to earn as much as you want. Just like kirindas, I too am a rare donor. I suggest put the option up, but still work in the summer, and have a stockpile of chapters. I believe a lot of translators have a stockpile so they can easily release sponsored chapters. Once you see if you're getting as much donations to allow you to work part-time, then so be it.

    Take care of yourself first, we're just faceless leeches on the interwebs. :P

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    • DarkShadowScorch · Translator · Mar 13, 2018

      Thanks for taking the time to comment! I think the whole Qidian issue is kinda veiled in secrecy so I’m just not super clear about the whole issue but will think over it some more. Like I mentioned in some other comments, I will be looking into MTL for the next couple of chapters and seeing how the quality turns out. I totally agree with how reading MTL by itself is a pain but it should work out since I already know Chinese. I also doubt that the donations would ever replace a summer job but wanted to provide some insight into my thoughts/considerations. Thanks for letting me know what you think! See you around.

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  9. kirindas · Mar 12, 2018

    On Qidian, from what I've seen, it's mostly a recruitment notice when they see that the novel is popular. If you reject, then they'll hire someone else and push out masses of speedy, lower quality releases. This is based on what I saw happen with Wei Translation and Cultivation Chat Group. I have no idea if a cease and desist notice was sent though.

    MTL- I personally don't mind MTL if it's understandable. I thought I remember hearing someone mention that editing MTL is more time consuming than translating it from the start. I think that this was from a Japanese translator, so I don't know about Chinese -> English translation.

    I only rarely donate. I'm very infrequent on donations, so I can't say on what others might do.

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    • DarkShadowScorch · Translator · Mar 12, 2018

      Hey Kirindas!
      Thanks for letting me know about Qidian. I think I will just try to take it in stride and keep you guys posted of what will happen.
      As for the MTL, I haven't done full MTL yet myself but I think it should be a fun experiment that should work out sometime this week. I'll probably do a couple chapters and compare.
      The donations is just something I wanted to put out there and I would probably wait for quite a while to implement it but its an interesting option for sure.
      nice to hear your thoughts. Feel free to be candid if you want to address anything else in the future.

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