At this very moment somebody is writing a text for a quotation, presentation, advertising brochure, blog post, manual, documentation, press release or advertisement for web and print or some other purpose.
How annoying when a typo or an overly complicated expression distracts from the actual message!
Fortunately, there are language professionals like me. As your reliable partner, I make sure that good texts become even better texts. I am also happy to take over the creative writing process for you directly and write manuals, press releases, or training materials based on your specifications.
Besides optimizing German texts, I also translate from English into German and, together with native-speaking colleagues, from German into English.
There is one thing you can always rely on: Your satisfaction is my top priority—because only your success is my success!
My name is Guido Lenz. I am a translator and copywriter by heart and soul. I have fun fooling around with languages and words. And it pleases me to write comprehensible and concise texts.
I will gladly dig into new topics for you. During many stages of my professional career, I have gained the flexibility to work under pressure.
As a qualified surveyor, I have worked for German and British companies both in my learned profession and as an applications engineer for GPS technology, as an executive assistant, in technical support, in sales and procurement, in product development, as a speechwriter, in preparing training materials, as a trainer and in marketing.
Since 1993, customers in areas as diverse as GPS, surveying, construction, automotive, avionics, railroad engineering, IT, telecommunications, gaming, consumer electronics, office electronics, electrical/household appliances, hardware, software and large-scale industry have entrusted me with their projects and rely on my experience, speed and flexibility.
Your satisfaction is my top priority – because only your success is my success!
If you need a translation, you either turn to an agency that places orders with freelance translators, a translation bureau that employs translators for specific languages and subject areas, or a freelance translation service provider like me.
Agencies and translation bureaus offer the advantage of being full-service providers covering all or most of the language combinations needed, having comprehensive processes for pre- and post-processing, and having access to a pool of often thousands of language professionals. So why should you choose a “lone wolf” instead?
There are compelling arguments for working with me as a freelancer:
I personally take care of your needs from start to finish: consulting, file conversion, translation and copywriting are all in my hand. Unlike with many large providers, the same person always works on your texts—me. This is how personal service works.
I am also available for you outside of normal business hours. For example, I read e-mails late in the evening, on weekends, or on holidays. Of course, I offer the same flexibility when processing your orders.
I know my customers and their wishes well. As a service provider for large agencies, I have often experienced that project managers were no longer responsible for a client from one day to the next. If the new project manager assigns different translators, problems often arise.
Thanks to a network of colleagues, I can also arrange other languages if necessary.
You save one or more intermediaries and get higher quality at a usually lower price, because the agency has to finance a much larger overhead for accounting, project management, review, acquisition, etc., which you pay with the price asked for the translation.
Machine translation is the future.
You read headlines like this all the time. Often, cost savings on a significant scale are promised. Should you use this technology or demand that your language service provider use it? The answer is a resounding “yes, but …”
Experts agree that costs can be reduced or delivery times shortened. But they also caution that this is not the case for all text types. For example, the use of MT, as it is officially abbreviated, is rather counterproductive for literary and marketing texts. In the case of mass texts, such as similarly structured manuals, general information and other instructional texts, there may be advantages.
In any case, an extensive evaluation phase should be scheduled, in which texts are translated in parallel in the conventional way and by machine, and then compared with each other. This step must be scheduled separately for each text type and language direction.
In addition, MT does not override the laws of the market. Its use is—at least currently—still associated with quality losses or significantly lower savings than hoped for.
A practical example:
English source: Use a plate level to level the digital level in preparation for the levelling run. The level has an integrated compensator for self-levelling within 5 degrees.
German MT using Google Translate: Nivellieren Sie das Digitalnivellier in Vorbereitung auf den Nivellierungslauf mit einer Nivellierplatte. Die Libelle verfügt über einen integrierten Kompensator zur Selbstnivellierung innerhalb von 5 Grad.
German MT using DeepL: Verwenden Sie eine Plattenebene, um das Digitalnivellier zur Vorbereitung der Nivellierfahrt zu nivellieren. Die Wasserwaage hat einen integrierten Kompensator für die Selbstnivellierung innerhalb von 5 Grad.
Correct translation: Verwenden Sie die Röhrenlibelle, um das Digitalnivellier vor dem Nivellement zu horizontieren. Das Nivellier verfügt über einen integrierten Kompensator, der Stehachsfehler bis 5 Grad korrigiert.
Further reading on machine translation:
- Mit Maschineller Übersetzung Kosten sparen? Erwartungen – und die Realität dahinter in MDÜ, volume 4/2020
- Warum Menschen (noch) die besseren Übersetzer sind in Technology Review (http://www.heise.de/-4170331)
- Maschinelle Übersetzung: Mensch schlägt Maschine in Technology Review, 2018-09-25
- Auswertung der Testergebnisse und Empfehlungen der Arbeitsgruppe “Maschinelle Übersetzung”, Schweizerische Eidgenossenschaft, 2019-11-19
- Quantifying the Effect of Machine Translation in a High-Quality Human Translation Production Process, joint study, EU and University of Gent, 2020-03-27
Whether you want to commission a translation, wish to have an existing text revised, or want to have a new text written: It’s not what you say, but how you say it.
Depending on the audience and country, you need to consider and adapt (to) form of address, style, cultural references and more.
Multinational corporations create style guides, language guides, tone-of-voice documents, and similar guidance that govern brand persona, style of marketing and functional copy, posts on social media platforms, and more.
If you already have such a document, please don’t forget to share it with me before your first assignment and let me know of any updates.
Don’t have a style guide yet? Then, please briefly summarize the essential requirements. If needed, I will be happy to create corresponding documents together with you.
Just send me an e-mail or call me: +49 5721-9953447.
If you have want me to revise, write or translate a text for you, you can contribute to an excellent result. How? By providing information. The more, the better!
In addition to a style guide (see: What is your style?), this can include sample texts you find exceptionally good or bad, special language rules (terms that are used differently depending on the context), format specifications (company name always in bold type or in small caps), typographical requirements (type of quotation marks, etc.), length restrictions (for example, for subtitles or for press releases), templates (Word, PowerPoint) and much more.
Especially for translations, it is helpful if you specify in advance how much freedom you give. Sticking too close to the source will lead to a target text that sounds translated. If you let me play with the language, allow me to omit some things or emphasize others, and perhaps even rearrange entire sections, the result is a text that will look and feel as if written by a native speaker.
It is also useful to have a glossary of specific terms and abbreviations used in your industry. This can additionally contain forbidden terms and boiler-plate translations. After all, the new text should fit your corporate identity.
Of course, the deadline and a contact person who can answer questions or obtain expert help are very important for a successful result.
Allow enough time for one to three proofreading and editing sessions. In addition to the pure text review, one or two DTP passes are often required to adjust overflow text, visually define hyphenation, and optimize the overall document layout.
Also, don’t underestimate the time and effort required for trans-creations:A short tagline can take significantly more time than a data sheet. Therefore, it is best to budget for an appropriate briefing and a final de-briefing to select from the presented alternatives.
I am often asked for a price to proofread or edit a text. A simple question, but not one with a simple answer. Why? Because those terms are not standardized and there are multiple levels of effort. Personally, I make the following distinctions:
Proofreading or basic revision takes place exclusively in the final text. It includes checking for incorrect spelling, grammar, and punctuation. I also correct obvious errors in meaning and provide a general assessment of the text.
Standard copy-editing comprises basic revision plus spot-checks with source text. In addition, I correct stylistic errors and check whether texts have been forgotten or translated incorrectly.
I can offer subject-matter editing for texts from areas with which I am well acquainted. Besides correcting spelling, grammar and punctuation, I check whether the text has been formulated or translated in a comprehensible way and whether the standard industry terminology has been used.
Full editing is the supreme service. It comprises honing of texts to make them not only technically correct but also sound good and easy to understand. I read such a text at least three times and revise it step by step.
Of course, I can also offer these services for texts created by me. Here, I work with independent service providers.
Due to the difficulty of estimating the amount of work involved, subject-matter and full editing can only be performed on an hourly basis.
By the way: When I translate or write for you, a triple proofreading phase is always included—with Word as a rough filter, with a special authoring program for style analysis, and finally by myself a day or two later (if the deadline allows).
You want to know how much you have to pay for text production, translation or revision.Who would not? And if I’d deal in standard goods or services where the effort always is the same, you’d find a concise price list in this place.
However, working with words is different. Simply send me a short e-mail with your requirements, the text for revision or translation, and other important key data. This allows me to specify a final price or an hourly estimate. If you prefer to discuss the details on the phone, just call me at +49 5721-9953447.
Do you need translations regularly and would you like to agree on a price per word, line or page? I am at your service. Send me an e-mail and I will call you at the time you request for a chat.
Depending on the type of text, I grant a discount when updating a text or if a translation has many identical or very similar parts. This is a significant cost advantage if a new version of your manual only contains a few changes or if certain clauses are used again and again. There is only one requirement: The text needs to be provided in an editable format such as Word (.docx), PowerPoint (.pptx), InDesign (.idml), etc.
Do you work as a project or vendor manager for an agency or translation bureau and have landed on this page by way of one of the usual portals or recommendations? Then you will be happy to hear that I am familiar with various translation management and translation memory systems.
I do not translate birth certificates, testimonials and similar private documents. I only offer my services to businesses.
I started translating in 1993, almost 30 years ago. A few years earlier, while still in school, I wrote and revised first speeches and texts—both for myself and others.
I specialize in construction (surveying, construction machinery), GNSS (satellite navigation, GPS, Glonass, Galileo), automotive, transport (railroads, avionics, logistics, boats, trucks), marketing and IT.I also frequently work on texts in the fields of CAD, CAM, electronics, household appliances, customer magazines, gaming and paper manufacturing. Other fields I have experience in include archery, snooker, pool, photography and horses.
You can find an excerpt listing of projects I have worked on in the files section. Often, I can only give general information, as there are confidentiality agreements with my clients. Of course, even without such an agreement, I treat all information known to me from the business relationship as confidential.
In the publishing sector, I have had the privilege of translating the following books:
- Deep Medicine, Topol, MITP-Verlag, reader on Artificial Intelligence in medicine
- Deep Learning, Goodfellow, Bengio, Courville, MITP-Verlag, textbook, Deep Learning
- Blockchain Grundlagen (Blockchain Basics), Drescher, MITP-Verlag, textbook, blockchain
- Künstliche Intelligenz (Artificial Intelligence), Kaplan, MITP-Verlag, reader on Artificial Intelligence
- technical editing of a textbook on the topic of geographic information systems
Furthermore, I have translated the following novels:
- Jenseits der Realität (Edge of Reality, Phantom Server vol. 1), Livadny, Magic Dome Books, LitRPG novel
- Der Gesetzlose (The Outlaw, Phantom Server vol. 2), Livadny, Magic Dome Books, LitRPG novel
- Schwarze Sonne (Black Sun, Phantom Server vol. 3), Livadny, Magic Dome Books, LitRPG novel
- Die Kristallsphäre (The Crystal Sphere, Neuro vol. 1), Livadny, Magic Dome Books, LitRPG novel
- Der Fluch von Burg Rion (The Curse of Rion Castle, Neuro vol. 2), Livadny, Magic Dome Books, LitRPG novel
- Höllenritt (Hellbound, Saga Online vol. 2), Mayes, Magic Dome Books, LitRPG novel