How to avoid junk words? Tips on plain language.

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Translation_Tips, Word Usage

This article was originally published on our blog Dragosfer a couple of years ago. It focuses on how to eliminate junk words in Turkish to English translations. As part of our consolidation efforts, I wanted to include it in this knowledgebase. Avoiding junk words is a much wider topic and a good habit to acquire. We are open to publishing your articles and more tips on plain language.  Turkish language is usually long winded and redundant. Translators should learn how to avoid unnecessary words […]

Using Between for Date or Number Ranges

Posted Posted in Word Usage

When using “between” to specify a date or number range, we must replace the hyphen with and. Incorrect:   Demirkent served in senior executive roles between 1936-68. Correct:      Demirkent served in senior executive roles between 1936 and 68. So, please do not add a hyphen between numbers or dates, if you are constructing the phrase with “between”. You may find a related article on dashes in here.  

Titles of Magazines, Newspapers, Journals – Capitalization

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Style, Translation_Tips, Word Usage

This piece is a part of our capitalization series. Proper capitalization in English is tricky. Stay tuned with our Language Tips for more. 1. If magazine or journal is part of the title, use upper case New York Magazine Journal of the American Medical Association 2. If magazine or journal is not part of the title, use lower case Time magazine 3. Capitalize the article the if part of the title of a newspaper, magazine, or journal The Washington Post […]

Placing “Only” Correctly

Posted Posted in Word Usage

Only is often misplaced in a sentence. We must be careful about its usage to avoid confusing our readers. Learning correct usage of grammatical modifiers is a hard work and it is worth all the effort. Only should go right before the word or phrase it modifies. “Only I said I cannot attend the party” means that I was the only one to decline the invitation. “I only said I cannot attend the party” means that I said nothing but […]

define/definition – Misused Words

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Translation_Tips, Uncategorized, Word Usage

This article series aims to eliminate usage errors and help non-native speakers to write clearly and fluently. We suggest that you always do proper research and use style guides effectively. For anything you are not sure of, feel free to ask us. Misused word define/definition Alternatives establish, lay down, set out, draft, establishment, drafting, design. Explanation In English, “define” means “to state the precise meaning of” (for example “we have already defined the meaning of control”). It does not mean […]

Industry vs Sector – Dragoman Style

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Style, Translation_Tips, Word Usage

Which one is correct? Industry is smaller, more focused, single business area. Sector is broader. A group of industries form a sector. In Turkish to English translations, authors mainly talk about industries and they use the word “sektör” in Turkish. As a rule, use industry in your translations and not sector, except for “public or private sector.”   Examples: healthcare industry              healthcare sector entertainment industry       entertainment sector banking industry                   banking sector […]

Express your feelings in English

Posted Posted in Accents, Translation_Tips, Word Usage

Expressing your feelings requires a little more then just using an adjective. Try the following common words, check out their synonyms and improve your word usage in English. Happy Content Every old person, no matter how content they seem, feels that sense of regret. Earl Woods Satisfied Are you satisfied with your working conditions? Delighted Kate Winslet was delighted with Oscar nominations. Pleased We are pleased to extend the term of our agreement. Ecstatic I feel ecstatic every time she […]

Eliminating redundancy

Posted Posted in Editor Notes, Sentences, translation, Word Usage

Eliminating redundancy is one of the key skills to fluency, but what is redundancy or a redundant word/phrase? If you can remove a word from a sentence without changing its core meaning, that word is redundant or unnecessary. Not every redundancy is a flaw, sometimes it is helpful to add variety to your sentences. The safest way to get rid of redundant phrase is to hire a professional copy-editor. Check out the following example, it is not only redundant but […]

Replace “–tion” Endings With “–ing” for Impactful Sentences

Posted Posted in Style, Word Usage

Dragoman translators know that using “-tion of” endings will only result in clunky sentences. It also violates EU Guidelines on Clear Writing. The acquisition of a new language will help you improve your job prospects. Better: Acquiring a new language will help you improve your job prospects. You can further explore how you can avoid nominalizations and cast more active sentences here. Nominalization, or using a hidden verb as a noun is a common problem with uninitiated Turkish to English […]

Cutting the Fat: Avoid Superfluous Nouns

Posted Posted in Style, Word Usage

Dragoman prefers to translate ideas as succinctly as possible. This means cutting superfluous nouns that add nothing to what we are trying to communicate to our readers. Translation Example 1: Many studies in the field of economics highlight the importance of transaction costs. Better:  Many studies in economics highlight the importance of transaction costs.   Translation Example 2: Weather conditions are expected to deteriorate over the weekend. Better:  Weather is expected to deteriorate over the weekend.   You can further explore how […]