2024 Write the World: A Day of Translation

2024 Write the World: A Day of Translation

Write the World 2024, ALTA's 2nd annual day of virtual panels related to literary translation, was held on May 21, 2024. 

recording tickets on sale now!

Before You Register

Registration: Purchase tickets to view the recordings of Write the World on ALTA's Eventbrite page. You will receive links to view the recordings by email.

ALTA members get 20% off registration for Write the World recordings. If you’re not an ALTA member but would like to receive this discount, join ALTA or renew your membership today. If you are a current member, the promo code was sent to you by email on Wednesday, April 10. If you need your code, write to us at info@literarytranslators.org. To use your 20% off ALTA member promo code, click "Tickets" in the event you want to sign up for, then input the code at the top of the list of tickets where it says "Enter promo code." Be sure to click "Apply" and you'll see the price change.

Accessibility: Write the World panels were live-captioned. 

Recordings: Those who already purchased a ticket for Write the World will also receive an email following the event with links to view the event recordings. Please be patient with our staff as we edit, caption, and upload event recordings following our Write the World events.

Attendees agree to abide by ALTA's Terms and Conditions and Code of Conduct.

Write the World 2024 Schedule

A Palette of Languages: Translating into or from Non-Native Tongues, 7:00-8:15am Pacific Time

Many translators have been told that one can only translate into one’s native language(s). In this panel, we’ll hear from translators who have contested this assertion, bravely ferrying literature from cultures and tongues they grew up with or later built deep connections with. What are the trajectories they’ve taken from wanting to work with these languages to actually doing it? What are the challenges and stereotypes faced by translators working across a palette of languages, including ones that aren’t their first? How and when do “accented translations” land as “bad or good” English, and why even label them? How can translators who work with non-native tongues foster a sense of community, and how can the translation world celebrate such remarkable contributions?

Moderator: Barbara Ofosu-Somuah 

Panelists: Isabella Corletto, Nguyễn An Lý, Sonakshi Srivastava


What I Wish I’d Known: General Professional Advice for Translators, 9:00-10:15am Pacific Time

Whether you’re publishing your first book or your tenth, this session is for you! This expert panel of editors, writers, and publicists will share their secrets on landing a book contract, then creating a buzz about your forthcoming title. We’ll discuss what to do during the all-important 3-4 months before publication, general marketing strategies, getting the most out of social media, getting your work reviewed, boosting sales, and winning post-publication prizes and awards. Special topics will include the differences in publishing in the UK vs the US, as well as publishing children’s books and poetry. Time will be reserved to answer your questions.

Moderator: Nancy Naomi Carlson 

Panelists: Katie Freeman, Chad W. Post 


AI Translation: Fears, Opportunities, and the Future, 11:00am-12:15pm Pacific Time

Since the fall of 2022 when ChatGPT was released to the public, society has been inundated with information about what AI can do for you, and think pieces about how AI will destroy many a creative career. Every ad for Grammarly can feel like a nail in the coffin for working translators, yet there remains the possibility that large language models (LLM) could increase translation productivity and remove some of the tedious tasks from our lives. In this Q&A, journalist Timothy B. Lee will share his research on AI and discuss its various impacts on the world of both technical and literary translation.

Moderator: Chenxin Jiang 

Panelist: Timothy B. Lee


What Publishers Want: How to Pitch, Present, and Promote Books, sponsored by the Sheikh Zayed Book Award (SZBA), 1:00-2:15pm Pacific Time

Logo for the Sheikh Zayed Book award

Translators are often the first people to discover a compelling book in another language, but they may grapple with which steps they should take in order to pitch the project to a publisher. What should they present in order for the work to have the best chance of being accepted? And how should they best use their own networks to promote the work? In this panel, we talk with publishers about the process and how to help translators work with translation grants, build better publisher networks, and have better tools and strategies when reaching out to publishers.

Moderator: Erin L. Cox

Panelists: Michel Moushabeck, Laura K. Fish, John Siciliano

Write the World 2024 Participant Bios

Please click here to read the bios for this year's Write the World participants.

Thanks to our Sponsors

Image showing the logos of our four main Write the World sponsors: American-Scandinavian Foundation, Yale University Press, UIowa translation programs, and the Sheikh Zayed Book Award