Why Going Digital? An interview with translator Lise Capitan

Lire cet entretien en Français/read this post in French

In my series of self-published writer interviews Pourquoi en numérique ? (Why Going Digital?), I have decided to open it to professionals who can bring to French writers a better level of publishing; to this end, I am pleased to introduce to you a translator. Translation is an important step in the career of an author. Recently, Jason Matthews, a self-published writer, had one of his Indie Authors Hangouts about this matter @ Indie Authors Hangout #30

Having their work translated into another language, gives an author a chance to reach new readers and to open new markets. In the era of digital publishing and global markets, translation is becoming mandatory. An author doesn’t have to wait to sell millions of copies in her own country or to receive a literary award to think globally – the digital publishing is global! Two weeks ago, I received an email from Lise Capitan. She contacted me with an offer to interview the Irish self-published writer David Gaughran. She had translated his book Let’s Get Digital into French. I was pleased and am hoping to interview David very soon, and especially as I have read his book.  I am thrilled now to be offered the opportunity to interview a translator:  Lise Capitan

Lise Capitan translates from English & Spanish to French

After graduating in Translation & Writing in France, Lise started freelancing in Paris for the video game industry. During her free time, she started working on literary translations.

Today, she translates from English and Spanish into French and writes in French. She mainly works on video games and popular fiction. She is currently working on several projects including a short story by David Gaughran and three translations for a digital publishing house (a contemporary SF short story, a Victorian novel and a romantic novel).

Lise is very modest and organized. I liked the simplicity of our exchanges. She is straight-forward, warm and very kind. She listens attentively and is very detail oriented. I enjoyed doing the interview with her, so I hope you’ll enjoy it as well.

Buy it on Amazon Kindle

Let’s Get Digital is also available from: see the list

Five questions to know Lise Capitan


How did you hear about digital publishing?

Through Twitter. Literature and translation are my passions. So, I started to follow people who I thought were really worth following on Twitter about those subjects, and I quickly realized that there was a whole community around e-books. I have been following news and discussions about it. Sometimes, I didn’t understand why some of them were so passionate about certain issues. But, one day, I took the plunge: I bought an e-reader. From this very moment, I understood that no one can stay neutral where digital reading is concerned. E-books are still in their infancy, things are not perfect, and more often than not, you have to take sides: are you in favor of DRM (Digital rights Management)? What about piracy issues ? Should authors have a publisher or self-publish their work ?


Why did you get into digital publishing?

The thing I like about digital publishing is the open-minded spirit of it. I’ve been interested in traditional publishing ever since I’ve been a freelancer, but I have always had the feeling that I was missing something to enter this industry, as if the doors were closed to me because I did not have the right connections. In digital publishing, things are different; there are way more opportunities. One day, someone tweets me that an Irish self-published author was looking for translators willing to work with self-published writers. I did contact him and a few e-mails later, I was signing a contract with David Gaughran to translate into French his first book Let’s Get Digital. And since this first experience went well, David is now having his other books (two short stories collections and a historical novel) translated.

Buy it in French on Amazon.fr or us


Could you describe your work and your services?

I can translate, adapt and copyedit from English and Spanish into French. I can also write in French and beta-read French texts. I mainly translate/write for video games (all genres and platforms) and popular fiction (SF, Fantasy, series, romance).


Do you meet your clients or can you do everything on the web ? How do you work with your clients ? Do you have a specific method?

In my field, almost everything can be done via the Internet. Sometimes, I work with clients whose voice I have never heard, even on the phone. I try as much as I can to go out there and meet my clients, whether they are writers, publishers or just video games companies, but it’s not always possible. In all cases, whatever the communication medium we chose, I always do my best to offer total transparency and friendliness. From my experience, these are qualities that might give you an advantage over your competitors. And when I work with self-published authors, I get as involved as I can in the book promotion, trying to use my own personal network and guiding the writer to find the platforms that are best suited for his books in French.


Do you have any wishes, thoughts for the business of digital publishing?

For now, the e-book market is rather small in France (I heard ebooks sales are progressing and sales of e-readers as well, though). I know it will inevitably grow bigger. What I would like above all, is that we stop these useless discussions about paper against digital, as if all that counted was the material aspect of things. In fact, it’s the act of reading that matters. Many digital publishers have understood that and some traditional publishers are also slowly getting into that. I really wish people would go on reading – be it on paper, e-reader, tablet, smart phone – and continue to be proud of it.

To know more about Lise  or contact her check her BLOG. To follow her on Twitter : @lisecapitan or on FaceBook

English & Spanish to French

Why going digital? is a series of interviews with Digital indie and Self-Published Authors, as well as professionals who work with them, helping them to create high quality books . 

If you want an interview, please read the form and choose 5 questions. Authors should look  here (Partie 1), non auhtors there (Partie 2)
If your French hasn’t been refreshed  since High School, don’t worry. Contact me, we’ll work out something.

GOINGmobo, the Magazine of the Mobile Bohemian


Chris Simon _ Licence Creative Commons BY-NC

Photos © David Gaughran

1ère mise en ligne et dernière modification le 14 novembre 2012