• Jasmine Heesaker

Updated: May 25

4 templates I wish I knew about when I was starting out as a freelance translator


Add these free templates to your freelance translation toolkit! You can thank me later.


  1. Email Signature Template

Since freelance translators mainly communicate through email, it is a great idea to add a professional email signature to the bottom of all of your correspondence. It will make you look more professional and potential, existing and brand new clients will have easy access to the information that matters most. I know that when I started out as a freelance translator, I didn't know where to begin with email signatures. How was I supposed to create one? How do they work? I found a really easy-to-use and customizable set of email signature templates from the Microsoft Outlook website here, that you can use to get started. Remember that the most important things to include in your email signature are: your first and last name, phone number, website URL and links to your social media platforms. Below is a Word doc. with over 20 different templates to choose from.


Email Signatures
.dotx
Download DOTX • 1.08MB


2. Invoice Template (that calculates totals!)


As a freelance translator, having access to a simple and easy-to-use invoice template will save you loads of time... seeing as any work that you do will need to be invoiced. The invoice template that I once again found on the Microsoft Office website here, is a great place to start. You can easily add in your personal information and then change the amounts (pricing) and client details for each job/agency/client. The invoice comes as an excel spreadsheet but once you input all of your details, you can easily save it as a PDF and send it off to get paid (promptly!). Many clients and agencies have their own specific invoice format that you can easily apply using this template. You can find the template that I first used to get my freelance translation business started below.


Customizable Invoice Template
.xlsx
Download XLSX • 66KB

3. Resume Template


When starting out as a freelance translator, you are going to need a clear and concise resume to send out to potential clients. As a rule of thumb, you should really try and keep your resume to 1 page and make it stand out from the crowd. Insert a photo of yourself (professional, of course), add your business logo and use colour! Try and show your personality through your resume. Many agencies and clients receive tons of resumes each and every day so make yours as attention grabbing as possible. I found a set of unique and modern 1-page resume templates on the Novoresume website here that can be downloaded for free. Tip: keep a PDF and a Word doc. version of your resume on hand at all times and only include the most important information such as: certifications, awards, memberships, education, work experience, CAT tools, specific skills and specializations. I have provided one of my favourite customizable templates for translators below.


Customizable Resume Template
.docx
Download DOCX • 49KB


4. Website/Social Media Banner Template


This may sound a little strange, but a nicely designed banner can go a long way. As a freelance translator, your online presence means a lot. I suggest creating a unique banner that you can use on your Facebook page, website, LinkedIn page, Twitter account... you name it! It really adds a professional flare to your business and allows those who you are interacting with online to know what you and your business are all about. The Canva website is great for this. There are tons of free (and paid) templates you can check out here. The website is super easy to use and you can save your work in several different formats. Below is one of my favourite simple and eye-catching banner templates to use. You can really go wild with this and change the colours, add your logo... anything goes. You just want to make sure that you include your name/business name, language combination and what it is you do—simple as that!


Banner Template
.pdf
Download PDF • 43KB


I hope these templates will help save you some time when building your freelance translation business!






5 tips from my creativity toolkit


As a marketing translator, creativity is key. Coming up with trendy catchphrases, witty one-liners and unforgettable taglines can become exhausting day after day. I know I sometimes feel as though I just can't muster enough flare. If that sounds all too familiar, I have put together 5 quick tips to help you keep your creativity at an all-time high, your puns quirky and your marketing translations on point.


1) Read

Oh no, here we go again. I might sound like a broken record, but reading is a fantastic pass-time for creative types like marketing translators. I'm not suggesting reading large tomes on marketing techniques or translation through the ages.... I am suggesting that you pick up something completely unrelated to your profession so that you can allow your mind to switch gears. Reading is the perfect way to wind down and allow your mind to be consumed by something other than translating. I always pick up fantastic new vocabulary words or remind myself of some fabulous words that I should be using in my translations. Sometimes one magic word can sneak its way into various translations for weeks to come.


2) Get out

Moving your translation workstation outdoors or simply to another location other than the comfort of your own home is a great way to get some inspiration. Breathing in the fresh air outside or people watching at your favourite café are great ways to refill your well of creativity. Taking yourself out of your daily routine and opening your mind to a new atmosphere can help give you a new perspective and a renewed sense of motivation. This can be just the push you need to shift your thinking so that you can muster up some creativity bombs.


3) Get crafty

Allowing yourself to get creative in other ways outside of work is a great way to boost your marketing translation creativity. Zoning out and letting your thoughts run wild is sometimes what you need to recharge your creative battery. Getty crafty and changing up how you get creative in your daily life is a great way to round out your creative side. Try picking up an adult paint by numbers or colour by numbers book. I know it sounds childish, but I find it extremely therapeutic and calming. It relaxes my mind and allows me the freedom to think about anything other than translation so that I can give myself a fresh start.


4) Exercise

Of course, exercise had to make it onto the list. I don't expect you to become a marathon runner or a bodybuilder, but moving your body is a great way to calm the body and rejuvenate the mind. I usually opt for short yoga sessions or brisk walks. I find that once I step away from my computer and start moving my body, my mind (and creative juices) also starts to get moving. All of a sudden, great catchphrases or perfectly charismatic words start flooding in and I feel ready to get back on the horse.


5) Browse social media

This may seem counter intuitive to some... but I find that browsing social media, listening to the radio and watching TV helps me flick on my creative lightbulb. It can be easy to get carried away with browsing social media, but when used in moderation, I find that it can help spark my creativity. As a marketing translator, staying up to date on the latest trends is crucial. Browsing social media to find out the latest news, discover which ads are drawing people in and observing how brands interact with their audiences to keep them coming back for more is invaluable information.


How do you stay creative? Let me know in the comments below!

  • Jasmine Heesaker

Updated: Jan 27


September 2019 Edition

This month is filled with highs and lows for different language communities across Canada. Settle in and read up on the newest issues that are affecting Canadians.


1. Ontario won’t pay for French-language university until 2023

(Sep 10, 2019)

This article focuses on how Ontario taxpayers won’t have to pay for the new French-language university until after the next provincial election in order to give the government time to focus on balancing the budget.


2. Not enough funding to cover all Indigenous language program requests, group says

(Sep 6, 2019)

This article delves into how there is not enough money available to cover what Saskatchewan groups want to do with Indigenous language instruction.


3. New $1 Billion Federal-Provincial-Territorial Protocol for Agreements to Support Education for Official-Language Minorities and Second-Language Learning

(Sep 4, 2019)

This news release declares that the Government of Canada will invest $1 billion over four years to support French education in minority language communities, education in English for English-speaking communities in Quebec as well as second-language instruction over the next 3 years.


4. Stop assimilating: Sask. schools aren't doing enough to offer Indigenous language education

(Sep 3, 2019)

This article details one mother's struggle to find a primary school in the Regina area that offers any sort of Saulteaux language program, revealing a deeper issue at hand.


5. Manitoba Liberals promise to invest in French education, child-care spaces

(Sep 6, 2019)

This article talks about the Manitoba Liberals promise to invest in French-language education and services. Leader Dougald Lamont says French people, language and culture enrich the province but there hasn’t been enough investment in their preservation.


6. Demand for Cree-language education outpaces teacher supply

(Sep 19, 2019)

This article reveals how Cree language programs have become so popular in Saskatchewan that school divisions are struggling to find enough fluent teachers.


7. Nuxalk Nation puts up stop signs in traditional language

(Sep 17, 2019)

This article celebrates how the the Nuxalk Nation, near Bella Coola, B.C., is installing stop signs in the Nuxalk language as a way to promote their traditional language.


8. Quebec Cree pass language act as its 1st-ever legislation

(Sep 24, 2019)

This article announces that the Quebec Cree passed their government's first-ever law—the Cree Language Act of Eeyou Istchee. The act sets out a plan to measure the health of the Cree language spoken on the east side of James Bay and put in motion ways to reclaim, revitalize and strengthen it.


9. Canada’s Inuit to get unified orthography

(Sep 27, 2019)

This article describes how Inuit in Canada are getting a unified orthography for the first time since Inuktut writing systems were introduced by Christian missionaries in the 18th century. Inuktut Qaliujaaqpait was developed by Inuktut specailists and is based on the Roman alphabet. Inuktut Qaliujaaqpait is a common set of symbols for Inuktut sounds that allows written text to reflect spoken words in any dialect of Inuktut.


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