Friday, December 26, 2014

For Literary Translators:A Conversion Formula to Remember

Literary translators are often faced with the problem of how to translate "x pages of 400-character Japanese handwritten manuscript paper" (400字詰原稿用紙x枚). One option is to simply translate it verbatim, i.e. "x pages of  400-character Japanese handwritten manuscript paper." The problem with this, of course, is that no one will know how long that is.

A better way to handle this problem is to convert the number of handwritten manuscript pages to the number of English words. To do this, you will need to remember two simple formulas.

Formula 1: One sheet of Jpn manuscript paper = 400 Jpn characters

Formula 2: One English word = approximately 2.5 Japanese characters.

Let us now do an example conversion....

Example 1: So how many English words is, say, 200 pages of Japanese manuscript?

Answer→ (Step 1) 200 pages = 80,000 Jpn characters ; (Step 2) 80,000÷2.5 = 32,000 Eng words ; Answer = 32,000 Eng words。

Now you try a few examples problems....

Example 2: How many English words is 500 pages of 400-character Japanese manuscript paper?

Example 3: How many English words is 1000 pages of 400-character Japanese manuscript paper?

Example 4: How many English words is 42,451 pages of 400-character Japanese manuscript paper?

1 comment:

『Behold My Swarthy Face。』 said...

just realized that saying "143,000 words" is more confusing than saying "5,200 manuscript pages"; this is arguably the stupidest status update of my blogging career.