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Throwback Friday! This post originally published in the summer of 2014. These days, when people ask me what it takes to be an interpreter, I tell them one part language skills, one part interpreter technique, and one part people management. When we embark on our interpreting...

To say that we interpreters are sometimes exposed to trauma is an understatement. Perhaps the worst is how it can happen so suddenly. I can go about my day nice as you please, interpreting tedious status conferences where attorneys are all legalese about dates and...

When I first started learning to interpret, I shadowed the radio in English. It took me months before I was able to even attempt simultaneous interpretation from English into Spanish. At first, it was hard enough to keep up in just one language. “Today we...

I spent Friday morning with Clifford Fisher, an attorney cum professor who educated us on the ins and outs of Recordings, Translations and Transcriptions. That afternoon I worked Accent Reduction with Juanita Ulloa, an opera singer who interprets in her spare time! We practiced...

Two months ago, my esteemed interpreter colleague Kevin blogged about studying for the interpreting exam. In particular he wrote, “If you are a complainer: quit complaining.  If you are an interpreter who needs to pass an exam, dedicate yourself to skills building” (www.najit.org/blog, 3/13/15). Never...

Question: How can I be a great interpreter? Answer: Make sure you understand what you are interpreting. Though it may seem counter-intuitive, if we begin to interpret in our target language before processing the source, it is like trying to pedal before getting on the bicycle. You...

A little while back I offered to serve as an interpreter, for free, for a non-profit aid trip to Guatemala. I like to help out and it seemed like it was a good cause. I was willing to go out on a limb and offer...

Thank goodness for words like “judge”. Juez just rolls off the tongue so nicely. I can say it in French with no problem at all, and assuming there is a similar concept in any other language of choice, a bilingual dictionary would probably make me...

It was one of those “deer-in-the-headlights” moments. The judge proclaimed, “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush!” and then looked at me, pointedly, to interpret. The courtroom was silent. It is hard enough to come up with a good equivalent without...