French review of Create A Language Clinic

My French is nowhere near what it used to be, I’ve just discovered. Once, years ago, I could comfortably read Spanish and French at the newspaper/ novel level and was working hard to add German to my language list. No more, alas. I was stunned and dismayed to discover how much I’ve simply lost. I can still manage some Spanish, both conversationally and in reading, but German has become an indecipherable sea, and while my French grammar remains, the vocabulary has all but disappeared.

However, I still read well enough that I got the general gist of a fascinating review of Create A Language Clinic (and fell back on free translation to fill in what I missed).

Reading the review, I discovered that the reader had worked through the book the same way I worked through the post; using a translation service. That’s a hard, hard way to learn to build a language—weirdly recursive, in that you’re working from a language you don’t know though a translator that translates like a multilingual drunkard with comprehension issues to convert into your language the method for creating other languages. I lift my glass to the diligent Leppiya, who definitely did the course the hard way. And apparently still got the humor. I’m glad that came through.

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About the author: Novelist, writing teacher, on a mission to reprint my out-of-print books and self-publish my new ones.

5 comments… add one
  • hollylisle Oct 23, 2006 @ 8:41

    That was a wonderful review, Leppiya. Thank you—very glad you loved the Tonk. They took me by surprise.

  • PolarBear Oct 21, 2006 @ 12:13

    Thanks for the link, Shawna. I haven’t tried to read French for nearly 30 years, and I was surprised to be able to pick out a few words and phrases here and there — even a whole sentence or two. Maybe I’ll add French to my efforts with German in Rosetta Stone.

  • Leippya Oct 21, 2006 @ 3:22

    If I ever thought I’d be mentioned on your blog… Woh! You started being my hero when I found your articles on writing a couple of years ago. 😉 I also talked about Talyn a while ago (http://leippya.livejournal.com/43543.html), but people around me are kind of reluctant to read in English. No harm in trying to make them want to, though.
    I don’t really have problems reading in English. My speaking is something entirely different, however…!

    Good luck with “Create a Culture Clinic”, I can’t wait to read it. 🙂

  • hollylisle Oct 20, 2006 @ 12:05

    Hi, Shawna,

    The translator I used does the full page, too. Click on the tab on the right (Web Page Translation) and put in the URL.

    The results are atrocious, but even if you don’t read French you’ll get the gist, and if you do read French somewhat, you can work between the two pages and get a fairly comfortable translation.

    I’d missed the previous entry. Leppiya sounded pretty pleased. I’m glad.

  • shawna Oct 20, 2006 @ 11:03

    Mmm, yes, I’d say she likes your book. There is more, too, prior to that… http://leippya.livejournal.com/68934.html

    Oh, and unless you don’t use google, their language tools (accessible from the main page near the search bar) will do the whole page at once, instead of in bits…

    I’m surprised I can still read any French, after 10 years of no use except for the rare thing I attempt to read. I never could speak it well. But the experience with French made learning Spanish much easier then it would have been otherwise.

    That is cool to know that your humor translates well… suggests that it isn’t based on idiomatic language, but on the ideas themselves… and I think I’d call that a positive.

    And yes, I really think in “…”, especially when I first wake up, lol.

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