Nurturing translators of Japanese literature / Workshop created for networking, honing skills

By Shinya Machida

Six young translators of Japanese literature from inside and outside the country were invited to participate in a workshop on translation techniques and practical knowledge related to the publishing process.

First attempt

The project is the Cultural Affairs Agency’s first attempt to nurture next-generation translators capable of introducing modern Japanese literature overseas.

The workshop was held from Nov. 9 to 13 at the Shonan Village Center in Hayama, Kanagawa Prefecture.

At the event, Tynan Kogane, an editor at New Directions Publishing, told participants in English that his company was looking for edgy translations with a unique voice and style. Based in New York, the company is enthusiastic about publishing translated works of Japanese literature. While Kogane explained his firm’s publication policy, participants asked questions on topics such as how to establish a relationship with publishing agents and whether it is possible to publish long pieces.

Participants were native speakers of either English or Japanese, and all of them were aiming to translate Japanese literature into English. They were all prize winners in the Cultural Affairs Agency’s Japanese literature translation competition, which has been conducted twice. The agency paid about ¥2 million for travel, accommodation and other expenses of participants and lecturers. Read more

Source: The Japan News