I’ll be deleting this project from my page. You can still read chapter 1 if you have it bookmarked, or from NovelUpdates site.
I do feel very sorry for getting your hopes up. The novel really is quite good as many of you expected. But I have to honor the author’s wishes. It was brought to my attention that she’s getting extremely stressed over the copyright infringements of her work and has even recently reduced the amount of chapters she releases. If this keeps going on, I feel she might lose the motivation to write, which will be a huge loss. I really don’t want to add to the chaos and her stress.
I went and read her latest post where she talks about this and I could truly feel her frustration. She said one of those pirate sites’ reason was to increase the fan base for her novel. She also said she already had a growing fan base and her original publisher is doing a good job at publicizing her work. Thus there’s no need for a third party to get involved. That really resonated with me. I’m not justified in translating her work without permission in order to enlarge her international fan base. She’s not getting anything out of it. Though I’m also not doing it for profit (those ads you see belong to wordpress and are not financing me), and my only reason was that I loved the novel and wanted the non-Chinese readers to also get to know it. But that’s only my selfish reason.
As for not getting permission, I can’t write Chinese. So if I wanted to contact the author, I’d need help from a native. And furthermore, I translate for free, so I can’t pay the authors anything. I don’t see a reason why they’d agree to let me translate their work. And I never wanted to get involved in any legal issues as this is simply a hobby and a means to help me learn the language (though it only helps me read so far, speaking it is too far a goal).
I’m disappointed as well, but I hope you can understand. I intend to ask someone to help me message the author and seek permission to translate the free chapters, but I’m not holding my breath about it. Besides, it would still leave you hanging in the end. The best solution is to get the licensing rights for an English translation, but that’s beyond my power. My best hope is for one of those big sites that are already doing this with other novels, though they seem to be only interested in popular novels with male main characters. But maybe one day they’ll decide to progress and include their female readership, and this novel might then get a chance.
I believe this novel would be very popular with teenage girls. There are already so many silly, wish-fulfillment novels for teenage boys, but there seems to be a stigma around the ones intended for girls. I only ever hear people criticizing them (example: Twilight), and it’s usually criticized by people that are not even the target demographic. Yes, I feel the novel is immature, but I’m also too old for it. Hence I treat it as a guilty pleasure. It’s simply fun to read. And teen girls would go crazy over it.
Thank you for reading. I’m bummed. I’m reconsidering my life choices. I’m depressed and I envy male readers so much right now. It’s like they’re the default readership and everyone caters to them first. Just look at Qidian Intl.’s novel choices. Not even one female MC novel. Is it up to their translators what project gets picked up? Are all their translators male? Maybe in some time, they’ll start introducing female MC novels as an option for the other half of their readership. Ya, I know, it’s not like they owe us anything. I should get up and do it myself if I’m unhappy with their choices. I’ve heard it all. As much as I’d like to do it myself, I lack any sort of business mind or leadership, so really, I can only complain and wait for someone else to pester them into adding variety.
About Black Belly Wife, I have a lot of respect for the first translator, who sadly got fed up with thieves and has decided to drop all her translations. She introduced a lot of novels and enriched many readers’ experiences.
But it concerns my personal taste. The way she translated was very summarized, keeping mostly the dialogue and sneaking in the relevant information in between, while skipping over scenes, descriptions, and info dumps. Maybe she did it for speed, maybe she prefers a more concise way of writing, maybe she was using text-to-speech method of translating, or maybe it was something else entirely. Regardless, the source material integrity wasn’t preserved, and it’s my preference to stick to it.
Thus I’m translating from the start, so I can give readers the chance to experience the entirety of the novel and appreciate it better. I really felt it was a waste otherwise.
And the reason I’m writing this note is to passive-aggressively copy-paste it to the start of each chapter until 23, because apparently not everyone clicks on the project page to read the notes (even if I pointed them toward it at the beginning of chapter 1). Well, what can you do. And I realize that there may be people who are willing to sacrifice quality for speed, and wouldn’t mind reading the summarized version of the novel, but I’m simply not that type of translator. Average as I am in my quality, I still try my best to be loyal to the source material. When I change things up, it’s only related to style, flow, and making things sound proper in English; I always preserve the original meaning and intent of the words.
I’ve added a Reviews page to the menu. It’s the final change I’m making to this blog, I think. I’m basically going to introduce some untranslated novels I’ve read. I’ll only translate the synopsis and talk a bit about the story and my impressions. It’s possible that a title from there may get upgraded to the Teasers section at some point when I get more free time. But for now, it’s just to let you know that these novels exist, and nothing more.
Whenever you’re bored, or feel like reading some MTLed novels (you weirdos (highfive)), you can glance at the Reviews and see whether something catches your eyes. I’ll be adding titles there from time to time.