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Old 07-26-2010, 05:05 AM   #1
Druid_Elf
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Which language do you use ?

Hi,
This might be a strange question but what language do you use to write your (e)books ?
If you are not a native english speaker, it's quite possible that you will make grammar errors (or translations errors from your native language to english).

So do you write in your native language, and then have someone translate it for you, or do you write in english, and hope that you have enough language skills to write in your non-native language ?

I was just curious as there are writers from all over the world and I would find it strange if they all wrote in english.

Thanks for your feedback
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Old 07-26-2010, 06:01 AM   #2
Worldwalker
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You might want to read the post "What It's Really Like To Be A Copy Editor" and ask yourself whether people who are native English speakers can write in their native language. From the evidence I've seen, a fair number of them don't.
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Old 07-27-2010, 05:03 AM   #3
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From what I've seen, non-native English speakers, at least from a certain skill level up, are actually less likely to make grammar and spelling errors than most native speakers. This is especially true of pet peeves like there/their/they're, a lot/alot and similar homophone confusions. Translation errors are a concern, but that's why you want a beta reader whose native language is English. :-)
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Old 07-27-2010, 08:11 AM   #4
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Thanks for your insights. It's true that with recent spelling programs it's less likely to make mistakes, but in my native language it's easier to be more eloquent than in English (unless I use translations dictionnaries ). But writing in English will make your work more accessable to a larger audience.
Hadn't considered the face of using a beta reader which is a native english speaker.
Thanks
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Old 07-28-2010, 12:46 PM   #5
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I was born in Israel and the first language I learned to read/write in is Hebrew. I spent two years in the US -- between the ages of 13 to 15 -- and learned to read and write in English. Today I write in English.
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Old 07-28-2010, 05:05 PM   #6
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I write kiddie stuff in French for my students and usually have it proof-read by at least 2 native speakers. Everything else, I write in my native language, English

I think that whatever language you write in, it is important to have proof-readers. I read a book off Smashwords recently where it quickly became clear that English was not her first language. There were no obvious glaring errors per se, but there were certain expressions or turns of phrase that very clearly gave it away. I look up the author's bio and sure enough, she mentions being a native Spanish speaker and living in many Spanish countries.
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Old 08-15-2010, 03:05 PM   #7
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My native language is English. I do a lot writing in Gaelic, but I doubt I'll ever be more than functional in that language. Gaelic grammar is straightforward and quite logical, but the expression of ideas is highly idiomatic (and often surprising, from an English-speaking worldview). I've become quite proficient as a translator from Gaelic to English, so I can understand what I read, but I'm far less certain when trying to write directly in Gaelic.

It's opened my eyes a great deal to the struggles others might have in writing in English.
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