And so I've taken the plunge and committed myself to subbing a series: Toshi Densetsu no Onna. I'll be honest, I'm a bit nervous. I enjoyed the first episode but it's not uncommon for a J-drama to start strongly and then tail off by the end. I'm hoping that my interest in urban myths and legends will keep me going, even if the stories aren't so great. And besides, it really is time I gave something back to the fansub community. Something more worthwhile than a bunch of TV reviews, I mean.
I haven't really done any translating since I lived in Italy, and was nice to do some again. I had the familiar feeling of frustration of squeezing one culture's expressions into another culture's words, and the relief and satisfaction when you get it even half right.
Now the subs are out there, I'm interested about the reaction, if any. Especially regarding accuracy. I decided to capture the general meaning more often than any literal translation (apart from the crime bits) and I even sneaked in a couple of jokes that weren't there. Will this annoy the purist? Possibly.
And of course, there were times when I couldn't make head nor tail of a sentence at all and had to guess according to the context. It was just a case of have a go and hope for the best, and not get too sensitive over any mistakes. After all, the quickest way to speak a language well is to speak it badly a lot first.
On the down side, when I took this on, I figured I could ask my Japanese teacher for help on those parts where I got really stuck. But it turns out she's going back to Japan soon, and I only have a few lessons left!