Translator Book Contract


Delivery of Work.

(a) The Translator agrees to translate [Title of Work by Name of Author] into the _____ language from the _____ language and will deliver the Translation to the Publisher by [delivery date]. Within 60 (sixty) days of delivery of the Translation, the Publisher will notify the Translator as to whether or not the Translation is editorially acceptable. If the Translation is not deemed editorially acceptable, the Publisher will notify the Translator in writing as to the reasons why and allow the Translator 30 (thirty) additional days to revise the Translation. If the revised Translation is deemed editorially unacceptable, the Publisher may reject the Translation and all rights granted under the Grant of Rights clause will revert to the Translator.

(b) If the Publisher has asked the Translator to provide a sample translation prior to signing the agreement, the phrase "editorially acceptable" will be defined as the standard of the sample translation submitted prior to the execution of the contract.

(c) Clause relating to Translators' use of AI
Translator shall not be required to use generative AI or to work from AI-generated text.  Translators shall disclose to Publisher if any AI-generated text is included in the submitted manuscript, and may not include more than [5%] AI-generated text.  

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First, make sure to give yourself plenty of time to complete the translation and only agree to a delivery date you know you can meet. You may find that some publishers use the subjective standard of "satisfactory" or "acceptable" to determine the acceptability of a work; try to negotiate for an objective standard instead, such as "professionally competent and fit for publication" or "editorially acceptable." Objective standards eliminate "market conditions" as a basis for the publisher to reject your translation. Moreover, you should make sure that you have a right to revise the manuscript in response to the publisher's written comments if the publisher does not find the manuscript to be "editorially acceptable." In the event that the publisher has asked you to provide a sample translation prior to signing the agreement, you should ask to define the phrase "editorially acceptable" as "being of the same standard and quality as the sample translation submitted to the publisher prior to contract execution." Also, watch out for language requiring you to repay any advance payments in the event that your translation is rejected. If the publisher rejects your translation, you should be allowed to keep any monies already paid to you.