One thing after the other ...

... that's what my life has been like for the last 14 months or so. Finally, I'm finding some space to breathe and to update my website, though.

Last year in July, I headed out to Hamburg (about two hours from here) for a business meeting. Little did I know that this meeting would turn into one of the more exciting projects I have ever worked on! Although I had already talked to one of the people I was going to meet on the phone, and had a really good feeling about working with her, I didn't know what to expect and was very nervous - especially since I knwe full well that the whole project we were discussing was on the line for me, depending on how the meeting was going to go.

What I hadn't expected was that the people I was going to see for the first time - Dr. Beate Forsbach from Edition Forsbach, Dr. Yusuke Yahagi M.D. and his wife April Yahagi - were not just enthusiastic for the project, but also really nice and welcoming. I hope I'm not exaggerating when I say that we clicked instantly.

From left to right: April Yahagi, myself, Beate Forsbach, Yusuke Yahagi

From left to right: April Yahagi, myself, Beate Forsbach, Yusuke Yahagi

Yusuke Yahagi es a heart surgeon from Texas and has written the novel "The Exchange Soldier" (available here and here in English), which he wanted to publish in Dr. Forsbach's publishing house in English and German. Yours truly was supposed to translate, of course. When we parted ways at the end of the day, we were all on the same page: This was a project we all wanted to tackle together.

The process that followed was unique for me in many ways. Working so closely with the actual author of a novel was very exciting. I can't recall how many e-mails we passed back and forth between Texas and Brauschweig, but I'll never forget surprisingly productive phone calls at midnight. And of course, it was all in service of one thing: to make the novel even better.

And the hard work by all parties paid off in the end. "Der Austauschsoldat" has been in stores since March. You can buy it here directly from the publishers, or here on Amazon.

Der Austauschsoldat.jpg

In May, I even had the pleasure of visiting the book's launch in the gorgeous Literaturhaus Berlin and get my own copy signed by the author - which is not as common for translators as you might think.

Even less had I expected to be introduced by Yusuke himself and even get a round of applause, which made me very happy and proud, but also caused me to stare at the floor rather hard. I very much look forward to seeing where the road is going to take Yusuke, Beate and the Exchange Soldier. I'm sure the future is bright for them.