Remember the job offer I mentioned on Saturday? It was for an anime series. We totally want to do it, because we feel like people care more about anime than about manga, and we're always hungry for attention. In fact, our family keeps telling people that we translate anime, because apparently they don't know the difference--but they must know at least subconsciously that anime is more important to people than manga, or more likely to be reacted to, because that's the one they remember to tell people, even though it's wrong. We were looking forward to making a Facebook post saying something like, "You're officially no longer lying!" or the nicer version, "I guess if you say something long enough, it really does become true!"
But in addition to that, we happen to be fans of anime as well as manga, and anime is nice because it has colors and movement and pretty voices. So we really wanted to take this offer. But there was a snag. They asked us for our per episode rate, and we didn't have one (why would we have one? we've never translated anime before!). We did a little Googling and found nothing helpful, so we compared the episode of an anime we watched with what we'd get paid for translating that same amount of eventfulness in the manga. (Made easy by titles like Noragami, which have single chapters that correspond very closely to single episodes.) And we gave them a number. In retrospect, I suggested perhaps we should have said, "We don't know. What's the going rate these days?" but Athena reminded me that we tried that once before when asked about per character rates, and it didn't work.
We never heard back, and the offerer said it was supposed to be a rush project, and we started to get antsy. We vented to lyschan, and she was kind enough to ask an anime translator friend of hers what the average rate was. Not entirely surprisingly, it was significantly lower than what we asked for. So now we're frustrated for a number of reasons, repeating to each other things like, "But we said we were willing to negotiate! That means you can offer us a lower rate and we won't get mad!" and "Stupid anime pirates making it impossible for legit companies to pay decent rates!" (The rate we asked for was based on our lowest manga page rate.)
And now we're wondering if we should email the guy again and tell him that we had no idea what the going per episode rate for anime was, and give him a lower rate, or if we should say, "You know, we have enough work right now that we really don't need another rush project for low pay." We don't want to sound desperate...or don't we? People keep saying on TV and stuff that you don't want to sound desperate, but is that always a bad thing? If so, why? Athena says, "Because if you're desperate, you'll end up taking jobs for ridiculously low pay." It's also been pointed out that accepting too low a rate devalues not only our work, but the work of other professionals. So I think we'll probably just let this one go.
So we're a little bit grumpy because of that, and because of other things that are best left out of LiveJournal. But! since we had the foresight to work on Saturday, we felt completely justified in taking the day off today, to walk to Target and buy some Christmas presents! It's true what they say about how getting outside of your head and thinking about other people helps you feel better. We're pretty happy with the gifts we bought, too, so we hope the people we got them for like them. We also hope we can figure out how to fit everything in our luggage if we go up north for the holiday.
Also! they were selling Disney pins, and they had one with Grumpy on it that said, "I'm Grumpy. Don't make it worse!" and we almost bought it on the spot because it's so fitting of our current state of mind. But we decided not to splurge on ourselves, because we already splurged on ourselves by buying Godiva chocolates (they had packages that were going two for $6, and that seemed pretty cheap from what we've heard of Godiva chocolate; and they looked so tasty), and the new Equestria Girls DVD. We had no idea they even made any more of that! So we're pretty excited to watch it...someday.
Today I'm thankful for having fancy Godiva chocolates to look forward to eating, having the new Equestria Girls DVD, having some nice gifts for people, the walk to Target not feeling as long as it did last time, and friends with helpful inside information.