British Centre for Literary Translation

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Supporting professional translators

Welcome to our noticeboard for support and professional development opportunities for practising literary translators. You can also keep in touch with us on Twitter and Facebook for the latest news about about funding, grants, awards, residencies and other initiatives.

PEN Translates!

PEN Translates! is run by English PEN and is backed by Arts Council England. This major fund for literary translation distributes £120,000 per year to translators and publishers and will support up to 20 works of outstanding literary merit translated from any world language. Applications are open to all literary genres including fiction, non-fiction, poetry and plays. The fund is open to submissions from all UK-based publishers.

English PEN also produce a useful spreadsheet listing possible sources of funding for translators working in the UK and Europe.

Find out more

Literature Across Frontiers

Literature Across Frontiers is a European platform for literary exchange, translation and policy debate.  Surveys of national organisations and publishers supporting literary translation can be downloaded from the LAF website.  LAF also publishes data and statistics on literary translations in the UK and Ireland.

Find out more at the LAF website


BCLT is a member of RECIT, the network for European literary translation houses. Visit the RECIT website for more information about residencies at translation centres in the network.

BCLT hosts the Charles Wallace India trust residencies for translators from India. Unfortunately we are not able to offer a residency programme for translators from other languages.

PEN Promotes!

This programme awards grants to UK publishers to help, promote, market and champion titles that are being translated into English and are under contract to be published.

Find out how to apply at the English PEN website

EC Grants for Literary Translation

The first calls for proposals under the Creative Europe Programme opened in December 2013. 

The Culture programme of Creative Europe supports critical and creative organisations and aims to help them operate transnationally and to promote cultural mobility. It funds literary translation projects, co-operation projects, networks and platforms.

Find out more about Creative Europe

John Dryden Translation Competition 

Sponsored jointly by BCLT and the British Comparative Literature Association

Applications for the John Dryden Translation Competition 2013-14 are now closed. The winners will be announced in June 2014. Prizes are awarded for the best unpublished literary translations from any language into English. 

Find out more at the BCLA website

Translate in the City

23- 27 June 2014 at City University, London

An immersion course in literary translation into English across genres.  

Workshops will be offered in Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish

Find out more  Translate_the_City (PDF)


Emerging Translators Network

The Emerging Translators’ Network is a forum and support network for early-career literary translators working into English (primarily) and focussed essentially on the UK, although there is clearly an interest in the wider English-language publishing world.

It provides an email-based discussion group, where you can ask questions, seek and give advice, exchange tips and resources, post details of events and opportunities, even pass on work! Regular meetings are held every two months in London, as well as occasional socials, events and workshops. Members outside London also organize meetings in their own areas.

It’s free to join, but prospective members should demonstrate a genuine interest in developing a career in literary translation.

Find out more at the Emerging Translators Network website

Arts Council England

Arts Council England’s Grants for the Arts programme helps artists and arts organisations in England carry out their work, including funding translation costs for specific projects.

More about funding opportunities from Grants for the Arts

Payment Rates for Literary Translation

The negotiation of fees is a matter for the individual translator and client to resolve.

It is the experience of the Society of Authors, when reviewing contracts, that UK publishers are prepared to pay in the region of £88.50 per 1,000 words.  

Find out more at the Translators Association website

Dhvani Fellowship at Sangam House

Sangham House, near Bangalore, India is now accepting applications for the Dhvani Fellowship which supports a 4 week residency for a translator working in Indian languages.

Anyone working from or into any Indian language (including English) is eligible to apply.  The fellowship covers board and lodging for 4 weeks  and does not include travel to and from Sangham House. 

Closing date 30 June 2014

Find out more at the Sangham House website


The Stephen Spender Prize

Translate a poem from any language, classical or modern, into English.  Entries for the 2014 Prize are now open.

Find out more at the Stephen Spender Trust website

Related opps content

Harvill Secker Young Translators Prize

Mentorship Programme

Our 2014 Mentorship Programme offers emerging translators the opportunity to work with an experienced mentor. Find out more

International programme


Do you receive In Other Words our journal for practising literary translators?  Find out how to receive your copy


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