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Grite Storm, Freelance Power User

 

Marguerite Storm has been translating since 2000. The Brussels-born Belgian, called “Grite” for short, fell in love and, in so doing, traded Europe for the USA, where she decided to pursue a career in translating. After an online course from New York University, where she earned  a certificate in translation, she began working as a freelancer.

She chose a name for her company and website, one that reinforced her strengths. Translation French .com, in no uncertain terms, told the world what her expertise is, and the job requests started flowing in. To help with project management, Grite chose a PC-based project management tool.

“Office Translator 3000 is sort of the “quickbooks” of the translation market for the PC,” she tells me, via Skype from her home in Dallas, Texas. “But when I moved to a Mac, they couldn’t support me. I liked it very much — it’s an A to Z project manager for translators – I even tried using  it as a virtual machine after I’d bought my Mac, but that was slow. I had to look somewhere else.”

Grite took a look at what the word on the street was from other translators - on blogs and forums like TranslatorsCafé.com and Proz.com.

“I wanted to know what was the best system right now for efficiency for translators and they kept talking about Wordbee Translator.” she tells me, matter of factly.  And after a year’s worth of translating, roughly 350,000 words later, what’s her conclusion?

“The conclusion is Wordbee’s the best thing I’ve ever used,”

In addition to Wordbee Translator’s  customer management, scheduling and billing functionalities, Grite loves the CAT — and the built-in machine translation capabilities.

“MT is integrated in the system. You know, no one wants to admit they ever use it, but it’s actually not so bad. In fact, it’s very helpful — not to use directly, but it’s very helpful to use when you don’t understand a sentence. It certainly speeds up the understanding of the content.”

After 15 years in the business, Grite is now able to pick and choose the jobs she takes, mostly business-related translations.

“I think it’s quite by accident that I started doing business, financial and banking translations. I don’t have a particular education with that, they just happened to be the first clients I got, translating corporate documents, Annual Reports, financial documents and the like.”

As a freelancer who’s able to choose from the jobs that hit her inbox daily, exactly what are her keys to success?

“Simple!” she says. “First, I’ve never missed a deadline. That’s probably most important thing is to meet your deadlines, and if they’re unrealistic, you shouldn’t take them,” she says. “Honestly, I shudder when I think about what it would feel like to miss even one.”

And second?

“Second is I’m very picky with my quality. When you deliver good work, people notice, and they keep coming back.”

Grite is a member of the American Translators Association and has chosen the Wordbee Translator Freelance edition, an annual subscription that costs $330 (€250) per year.

Challenges

  • Client: Translationfrench
  • Project type: Businesses, financial and banking translations
  • Scope: two translators

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