A few topics condensed into one thread, feel free to pick out the ones of interest and disregard the others. 1. When you write something, are you satisfied on the “first draft” or do you find yourself frequently revising your writing? 2. Is your adherence to grammatical rules or “proper” use of the language something you value in your own style? 3. Where do you get your word choices from? Are they chosen to convey the meaning of the text, or do you view the use of language artistically? Those are just a few questions on things while I’m idling here during my soon-to-end vacation. I’ll answer them. 1. I only tend to proofread while I’m writing the first draft, rather than finishing the whole thing and going back over it. I’d rather omit something in the first part of the process than go back and mess up my point if I’ve already moved on to something else. Translating Japanese into English and vice-versa is kind of a different animal; how strictly do I want to adhere to the textual meaning, but at the same time correctly capture the nuance of the language? Lots of expressions in both languages do not have a direct equivalent that can, in my opinion, satisfactorily be both a “hard” translation of the text and properly convey its meaning. An example I came across recently was a six-country public opinion survey done that spanned Japan, the U.S. and four W. European countries. In the Japanese language, this is very simple: 日米欧, nichi-bei-ou. Translating this into the article as it could be written out becomes clunky, but do I want to make the editorial decision to omit or rephrase that particular word which properly conveys the meaning in the native text? I try to stick closer to the native texts where I can, but run into this problem once in a while. It’s probably the most time-consuming part of translating anything well. 2. I’m probably not demonstrating it so much here but my adherence to grammar depends on my mood, and I think an artful use of language is often better than its structured, “correct” form if one views their language not only as a means of communicating ideas but also a form of self-expression. I tend to stick to these rules though, I think, when I post here for whatever reason. 3. I like word choice depending on my mood at the time, kind of like the grammar thing. I mean, it is all context-based in that I wouldn’t pick a word that is imprecise if I felt the precision of a word in describing a concept I felt was important to keep. It’s a hot day today. Maybe I should go sit back inside!