I became interested in Chinese
books in 2014. That year, I read some amazing Chinese books and it also started my translating journey. After I read the prologue of Seven Unfortunate Lifetimes on Hamster’s blog, I couldn’t wait to know the story. Hence, I started translating it myself. That was the time that I discovered that I like to translate. Although, I have to say my translation of my first project was garbage. During that time, I read some more books, mostly historical ones. After reading many books about reincarnation or time-traveling, I’ve seen them all. It’s almost the same kind of plot. In the beginning, it was quite fresh and I overlooked many problems. However, the more I read, the more I begin to question my own sanity. Also, the stories usually begin quite good and then drags and drags on forever. I got tired of them. It’s like the authors copy a bit of this book and that book and then put them together after a bit change.
There had been occassions where I had been pleasantly surprised (The recordings of the hairpin), but my main enemy now is time. With limited free time, I don’t even bother to read a few chapters of the book to see of it is a good book. I prefer to just grab a book that I know will be good.
Age is also a factor. When I was younger, it was fun to read a book without much depth and see people fight over guys/girls without scruples. As I got older, I keep wanting to strangle people who don’t have dignity and brains. So, instead of having a relaxing time reading a book, I got more worked up in frustration. To spare myself from the agony, I stopped reading those books.
I don’t know why, but I’m just not interested in modern Chinese books. The few modern Chinese books I have read were good, but the genre just don’t appeal to me. It is strange because I read modern in other languages. Lately, I read the modern book In the Midst of Winter by Isabel Allende which I found quite entertaining. I guess it’s that I have a type in Chinese books.
As for Seeking Happiness, I found it good when I read it back then, but it was a forgettable book. As I’m translating it now, I’m reading a few chapters in advance. I find some parts dragging and boring. However, it always knows how to get my interest back. Seeking Happiness is a bit different from other time-traveling books as it doesn’t have the cat fights and over the top beautiful female. It is good to read for a change, but to be completely honest, it is boring sometimes.
Since, I stopped reading Chinese book, you may be wondering if I will be translating after this project. The answer is I think I will be translating short books because even if it’s a frustrating book, I can finish it in a short time.