Writing a novel in a single language, for a homogeneous audience is a difficult enough task. However, when a foreign publisher decides to publish a novel in another language, even more challenges ensue. Diana Thow of The Iowa Review discusses these obstacles with Funeral for a Dog author Thomas Pletzinger and translator Ross Benjamin. The following are selected excerpts from the full interview:
DT: Ross how did you involve Thomas in your translation?
RB: I'd say it was question and answer mostly.
TP: The translation was a very slow process. In the beginning we met, talked about the book, drank beer. We would work on one page or two pages and then go for a walk with the dog in between, or have dinner. I think during that time, Ross, you got an idea of what I wanted the book to sound like.
RB: I was doing a brain scan of you. A Vulcan mind-meld while we were getting to know each other.
DT: Can you give me an example of some of the questions you would ask?
RB: While ...