Translating comics

It was fun translating my graphic novel from French to English. Fortunately writer LF Bollée gave me free rein. I began the translation several years ago and revised it recently, stripping out a lot of exclamation marks and toning down the more extreme Guy Ritchie-isms; they felt appropriate, and fun, but they swerved the book into comedy, so I dumped a few ‘Guv!’s.

I read French comics translated into English. It’s tricky staying faithful to the writer, the position and size of speech balloons and giving the reader fresh language. Often the translation has been too faithful to the original, leading to a stilted reading experience. (If there is someone from Dargaud reading this, please let me translate Jean Giraud’s Mister Blueberry).

I am grateful to LF Bollée for allowing me to run with it and he has approved the new version. But I did go nuts, and used it as an opportunity to smooth over a couple of cracks, notably a scene where a drug dealer is apprehended inside a pub.

London Inferno was written in 2002 and published in France, by EP Editions. It’s now available on comiXology and published by Markosia.