Blog

Read our blog here, where we discuss all things translation and language.  From time to time we also update you on our latest news, throw in some opinion pieces or give you more insight on translation trends.  Join the conversation on our translation blog, we are always happy to hear from you.

Print vs Screen: is there a real difference?

Print vs Screen: is there a real difference?

In this modern age, the humble book can take many forms. You can carry around an entire library in your pocket, read war and peace without feeling like you’re holding a weapon in your hands, and take the entire Discworld series with you on your holidays. But is...

The Magic of Myths and Folklore

The Magic of Myths and Folklore

Being based in the south-east, it’s no surprise that Monster Books has a penchant for bizarre and fantastical stories. Narnia, Middle Earth, and Wonderland were all invented in nearby Oxford, and the river that runs through the inventively named Henley-on-Thames is...

How to get a child interested in reading

How to get a child interested in reading

Some children seem to have been born with their noses stuck in books. I was one such child, exhausted every day at school because I had stayed up late reading Molly Moon or My Secret Unicorn - or whatever I was obsessed with at the time. In an act of desperation, my...

Carys: Interning with Aktuel

Carys: Interning with Aktuel

I decided to complete an internship with the team at Aktuel, following on from university. I studied French and Italian at Durham University and then moved to the University of Bath to complete a postgraduate degree in translation and interpreting. Upon leaving...

What makes a children’s bestseller?

What makes a children’s bestseller?

Observations of a Children’s Bookseller World Book Day is about getting children interested in books - and that’s the job of a children’s bookseller all year round. So as the day approaches once again, I find myself thinking - what is it that makes the popular books...

Funny February: The Lifeline of Funny Books

Funny February: The Lifeline of Funny Books

The world is throwing us many challenges at the moment, one of them being exactly how to keep kids engaged with learning while they’re stuck at home, missing their friends and teachers. It’s not easy - but funny books might just come to the rescue. The role of funny...

Funny Books For Kids By Age

Funny Books For Kids By Age

Trying to keep kids interested in reading can be a challenge at the best of times - and especially when they’re stuck inside all day getting a bit sick of all the home schooling. Luckily, funny books come to the rescue to grab their attention. There’s a huge range to...

Language learning everyday

Language learning everyday

I am Carys, and I am currently completing a remote translation internship with Aktuel following on from my university studies in languages and translation. The internship has been very enjoyable, I have had the opportunity to do plenty of proofreading, technical...

Literary Revolution in User Manuals

Literary Revolution in User Manuals

In Machines Like Me, Ian McEwan talks about a poorly-translated user manual that came with a robot. "Its language was mostly clear and precise,” the narrator tells us, “but Adam was created across different agencies and in places the instructions had the charm of a...

Best Language Apps 2020

Best Language Apps 2020

Here is a list of our favourite language apps in 2020 (feel free to suggest any you love): Grammarly (Chrome extension or keyboard addition) – Grammarly is an AI-powered writing assistant which checks your spelling and grammar across documents, emails and social...

Covid and Translation

Covid and Translation

Translation: A sure-fire investment for the future I’m 52 years old today (… why thank you – it’s all that clean living) but, I can still recall the classroom dust motes, the smell of polish and wood, and the pain and anguish, 40 odd years ago, as I sat there, utterly...

Mild Fantasy & Children’s Literature

Mild Fantasy & Children’s Literature

Stories that politely pretend that everything is perfectly normal when it’s clearly not. In 2015, I spent an enjoyable summer with an excellent production company (Warpline Films), quietly pottering about the British Isles making a documentary on British Fantasy -...

GDPR and translation

GDPR and translation

This whole GDPR thing is a bad business, I fear. It’s not just that it’s beginning to look like a bandwagon for consultancy and compliance firms to charge for not a great deal, it’s part of a problem that is only going to get...

Best Language Learning sites and Apps

Best Language Learning sites and Apps

Aktuel Translations started simply because a client of ours was trying to get out of Italian lessons his boss had booked for him. In 1992 I had founded a company called London Tutors (home tuition and office training) and it wasn’t going well. After a few months, I...

Give us the word …

Give us the word …

Happy International Translation Day (for yesterday). I know I’m probably biased, but language is our crowning achievement as a species. Language is the basis of understanding, we use it for cooperation, artistic expression and taking the piss out of our friends. So,...

My Week: Cover art, Space Dragons

My Week: Cover art, Space Dragons

Monster Books is getting its Spring 2018 catalogue ready, so I’ve been grappling with front covers over the last few days. Like ice skating, eating porridge and shopping for new trousers, it’s an activity I think I should enjoy but, actually, I don’t. I love going to...

My week: The best languages to learn for work

My week: The best languages to learn for work

There’s a mouse in our kitchen, and every time it makes an appearance we get a cartoon response: Hortense (aged 9) screams and stands on a chair and the boys whip out a selection of knives, hammers and spikes they have secreted about their persons and go on the...

An Intern’s Blog

Hello! My name is Virginia and I am the new Italian intern here at Aktuel. I am writing this blog to share my experience with all those who, like me, have just graduated and are in search of the right opportunity to get started in the translation world. I started my...

NordicIPR 2017 Copenhagen

NordicIPR 2017 Copenhagen

So, Nordic IPR 2017 … PTI (Patent Translations International) has been translating patents for over 18 years; prior to that we were translating patents (and all manner of patent-related material) as Aktuel Translations since, well … since I was a nipper. In fact, the...

Translating Motives

Translating Motives

There are a lot of double standards being run up political flagpoles these days and I think it is high time the perpetrators were called out. The most current are those relating to the future of the UK: May seems to be relaxed about a hard Brexit but admonishes the...

The Quarto Translations Diversity Awards

The Quarto Translations Diversity Awards

The Quarto Diversity Awards for Children’s Writers got into second gear last week with a first press release and now we’ve got a logo by the talented Toma Checov (see above). This year’s sponsorship is a bit special (see below): not only are we supporting something I...

There’s no such thing as a rational decision

There’s no such thing as a rational decision

I love making decisions: they are PROGRESS + HOPE = EXPECTATION and I’ve always suspected they come with their own safety net: make enough and they tend to cancel each other out eventually – just like placing hundreds of each-way bets. I’ve taken pride, throughout my...

Going Global 2016

Going Global 2016

I went to this 2-day event in Olympia, partly because I had been asked to give a talk about ways to maximise your investment in translation (namely, turn it into a profit-making exercise, not a cost to be borne between gritted teeth) and partly because I wanted to get...