Translator co-working at Union St


I’m about to start hosting monthly translator co-working days at Union St, a co-working space in the centre of Sheffield. The first co-working day for translators is on 5 June. If you’re a translator nearby, I’d love to meet you!

The co-working day is an informal event for translators to meet and work together. You can come for the whole day or drop in and out as you wish.

In case the promise of a day of language chatter and translation networking isn’t enough to tempt you, Union St hosts a pop-up cafe each day. On Mondays, Shuju Kitchen serves award winning Taiwanese cuisine. You can pre-order if you wish at https://unionlunch.org/collections/mondays.

If you’d like to join us for a day of co-working, sign up via Eventbrite. Tickets for the day’s use of the co-working space cost £10. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions at all.

Hope to see you there!



Reflections on co-working

If you’ve checked out the “About me” section of this site, you’ll already know that I work from a co-working space in Sheffield, UK. The space is called Union St, and it was recently featured in the national media, when the Sunday Times paid us a visit and wrote an article on co-working. I was given the opportunity to share my thoughts on co-working and konnekt! was featured in the article (an extract is available here). This interest in Union St from outside Sheffield got me thinking: What was it that made co-working such an attractive prospect for me, and what do my freelance colleagues think about co-working?

Why co-working works for me

When I decided to start up as a freelance translator, Union St was my very first port of call. New to the world of self-employment, I was sure I’d need all the help I could get, and the idea of having people around me who had been through the same sorts of processes and probably experienced many of the same doubts and concerns that I had felt like a kind of safety net — there would be people who I could chat to, learn from and maybe even work with around me all the time. The second major factor in my decision to co-work was that I wanted a place to work outside of my home. I was worried that, if I worked from my kitchen table or a spare room, my line between home and work would eventually blur, and I’d feel isolated. I wanted to be able to get out of the house each day, then come home to relax, knowing that I’d done what I needed to do for that day and spoken to some other people. For me personally, having a separate ‘office’ environment helps me to work efficiently and keeps me focused. I’ve got ‘going home’ to look forward to at the end of the day, so my mind stays on the task at hand. And if I do find myself flagging, I’m right in the heart of the city, so I can have a quick wander around or run some errands before returning to my desk refreshed and ready to get going again.

The flip side

However, everyone works differently and for many freelancers, these issues aren’t a problem. Most of the freelancers I’ve worked with in my career to date work from home very successfully. And that set-up has many benefits too — no travel time (which in turn increases capacity) and no costs, to name just a few. Others may not be able to co-work due to their location or family commitments, or they may choose not to because they are simply more comfortable at home. That is one of the great things about freelance work: there isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach, and there doesn’t need to be. There’s room for co-working and working from home, and you can opt for one, the other, or a mix of both, depending on your preferences and situation.

What do you think?

Have a read of the Sunday Times article and let me know what you think — I’d love to hear your thoughts on co-working. Do you think it’s a useful way to improve the quality of life you have as a freelancer? Can it improve your business or your own performance? Or can you get by just fine without it? If you work from home, have you got any home-working tips for staying focused in your office set-up? Leave a comment below or get in touch on Twitter! (@konnektlanguage)


New year – new website!

Happy new year and welcome to my brand new blog.

The last day of 2015 seems a good opportunity to launch my new website and blog for 2016. The website is designed to tell you a bit more about me and the services I offer at konnekt! language solutions. Over the coming months I’ll be adding to the site and the blog to share my translation-related thoughts and interesting articles, so watch this space.

konnekt! language solutions started operating in December 2015, after I decided to set up as a freelance translator, proofreader and language tutor. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all of the clients and project managers I’ve worked with so far for making my first few weeks of business so positive. I’ve enjoyed working with each and every one of the new contacts I’ve made and translating content for brand new clients. Thank you for your support. I’m excited about our continued partnership during 2016 and beyond, and looking forward to getting to know many new clients too!

On that note, I wish you a very happy new year, and for English-speaking readers, I’ll leave you with some interesting linguistic facts about the new year in Germany/the Netherlands/Belgium:

  • In German, people wish each other a “Guten Rutsch” into the new year on 31 December, which literally translates as “a good slide” into the new year. I’ve always quite enjoyed this imagery, although there isn’t any sliding involved in German celebrations as far as I’m aware…You can also opt for the much more translatable “Frohes neues Jahr” as a happy new year wish.
  • In Dutch, New Year’s Eve is referred to as “Oudejaarsavond”, or “Old Year’s Evening”. The two-day period of 31 December/1 January is known as “oud en nieuw”, or “old and new”.  In Dutch-speaking Flanders in Belgium, children traditionally read a “nieuwjaarsbrief” (new year’s letter) out loud to their family after the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve. The letter typically contains elaborate rhyming new year’s wishes for the family!


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