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Alethea & Athena
Livingstone volume 2 
17th-Mar-2016 12:05 am
Oh man, we finished our translation of Devil Survivor 6! Woohoo! I would declare tomorrow a day off, but we have three more books we want to finish in the next two and a half weeks.

But in the meantime, it's Review Rednesday! And as I mentioned last week, we were just about out of things to review, but fortunately, volume two of Livingstone was released just yesterday! So have a review about it! Spoiler level: very mild.

I want to say, "Somehow Livingstone translations always come at a time when..." but I'm really not sure what that time is. I could say, "When we're ridiculously busy," but when is that not the case these days?

It is true that we had pretty much forgotten everything except the premise by the time we got to this volume. Apparently that was okay, though, because so had the author. And of course we had volume one and our translation of it to look back on and refresh our memories.

I did write two notes while we were translating, of things that I wanted to include in the review. First, the first four pages of the Japanese version are in color, so when you see Amano eating a popsicle, it's light blue, and we had to ask, "Is that sea salt ice cream?" Of course they never tell us, but here's this guy looking like Yukine, eating (apparently) sea salt ice cream, and we're like, "It's our two favorite series combined!"

My other note was about sound effects. There are two distinct sound effects for when Amano shakes his can of spray cleaner and for when they're handling rocks, and "rattle" seemed like the best English equivalent for both. But they're two distinct sounds in Japanese, for two very distinct actions, and Kodansha had recently sent out a new style guide telling translators no seriously, if we can see that those are clearly not the same sound effect, please don't translate them as the same sound effect. (Contrariwise, we're not supposed to translate the same Japanese sound effect to different English sound effects.)

So we thought and thought and thought, and we wanted to keep rattle for the spray can just because I guess, and eventually we decided to do what we usually do with sound effects that don't translate: we romanized it. But there's a trick to romanizing sound effects, because if you don't do it right, they'll say, "Hey, you're not supposed to leave it in Japanese!" The trick, then, is to come up with a way to spell it that doesn't look like a romanization. So kacha (the sound of a door opening) becomes ka-chak. (Putting extra consonants at the end tends to help.) And now the sound effect for psycholiths rattling around in someone's hand is "jalla". Tadah!

As for the story, it seems like this volume was kind of the author's way of catching himself up, and redirecting the story to fit his new world view (see the comments from the author on page...whatever page it is where Maekawa-sensei talks. it's between the chapter about Arima and the time capsule chapter. Speaking of Arima, there's another connection to another thing we translate!). For example, it looks like Amano's going to get a new gaming device.

The stories were all very interesting, though. That one with Kanzaki in volume one had me going, "Nnnngh..." but that wasn't really a problem in this volume. I especially liked the story about animals, as someone who firmly believes that animals do have hearts. Azusa and Nagisa were an interesting team, too. I wonder if they'll be back. And I wonder what they were talking about in regard to "tools" and their disposal. There was some mention of something like that back in volume one. Is it related, or did Maekawa-sensei decide to take the story in a different direction? Only time will tell. (A lot less time if we decide to read ahead, but we don't have time for that.)

Today I'm thankful for being able to cross one more thing off the to-do list, getting to talk about Livingstone, being done with the fireball of infinite exposition (we hope), helpful reminders of what time the Relief Society activity is tonight, and knowing the trick to sound effect translation.
16th-Mar-2016 10:54 pm (UTC)
Ohhh, nice sfx trick! I thought you were doing something like that in some of your translations, but it's neat to know for sure!

I haven't got this volume yet (and haven't decided if I want to subscribe to it at my comic shop) but conveniently, RightStuf is having a Kodansha manga sale right now (through i don't know when. for the life of me i can't find an end date listed anywhere, but it started on the 14th)! So I'm thinking about it, and now you can tell other people how to get this manga (or other manga that they need to read so that they can keep being your friend) for a great deal!!
17th-Mar-2016 02:22 am (UTC)
Yup, we're sneaky like that! The point is, it usually sounds pretty much like how you'd say the Japanese sound effect, but since you can't expect English-speaking readers to know correct Japanese pronunciation, you spell it in a way that sounds like that. Other times, we'll look at the picture to see what's happening and say out loud what we think the action would sound like, and then try to figure out how to spell it. Believe it or not, that's the more difficult method.

Oooh, thanks for the tip about the RightStuf sale! We got the email and thought, "Yay, Kodansha sale!" and that was the extent of our thinking about it. But you're right, we should tell people about it.
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