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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By Holly

Novelist, writing teacher, on a mission to reprint my out-of-print books and indie-publish my new ones.

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16 years ago

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.

16 years ago

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 (, 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. 🙂

16 years ago

Mmm, yes, I’d say she likes your book. There is more, too, prior to that…

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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