1. peachalulu
    Offline

    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

    Joined:
    May 20, 2012
    Messages:
    3,829
    Likes Received:
    2,382
    Location:
    occasionally Oz , mainly Canada

    When a character has a second language

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by peachalulu, Aug 18, 2015.

    In the novella I'm working on my antagonist is a Russian mobster. I always love when characters lapse into a second language in stories cause it always makes the character a bit more authentic. Especially when it can confuse other characters not knowing what the character is saying. I don't want to always rely on the fallback - he said something in Russian.

    However this would be so much easier in French. For Russian I'd have to download some sort of Russian keyboard and in the end it might look totally awkward.

    What I'm thinking is, what if I type out the word like how the English would pronounce it -
    For instance *sshole - would be mu'dak. Has anyone seen this done?
     
  2. Sifunkle
    Offline

    Sifunkle Dis Member

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2014
    Messages:
    481
    Likes Received:
    570
    That's called transliteration, and it's pretty common IRL as well as in fiction from my experience. Would not bother me in the slightest.
     
    peachalulu likes this.
  3. AspiringNovelist
    Offline

    AspiringNovelist Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2015
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    139
    Location:
    Gulf Coast
    Yes, it's done quite often. Totally acceptable.
     
    peachalulu likes this.
  4. Aaron DC
    Offline

    Aaron DC Contributing Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2015
    Messages:
    2,554
    Likes Received:
    1,251
    Location:
    At my keyboard
    You could use google translate instead of a Russian keyboard, but writing it in english would give much better flow to the text.

    I do this in real life, as some words just lend themselves to phrases more readily than English.

    "bu hao" sounds so much more meaningful than "that's bad"
    "Je ne sais pas" than "I don't know"
    Che? than "Huh? / What?"

    So I would definitely say go for it.
     
    peachalulu likes this.

Share This Page