Jamie Bulloch

Jamie Bulloch © Jamie Bulloch Jamie Bulloch is a historian and has been working as a professional translator from German since 2001.

His most recent works include The Sweetness of Life by Paulus Hochgatter for Quercus and Ruth Maier's Diary for Harvill Secker. Peirene has selected him for the translation of Portrait of the Mother as a Young Woman because his sample translation received unanimous admiring praise from the editorial panel. His self-effacing approach to the original text will undoubtedly allow the rhythm of the sentence to come through in English. He lives in London with his wife and three children.

Three questions to Jamie Bulloch

Why did you choose to become a translator? Is it the profession you always wanted?

Actually I never really expected to be a translator. During and after my PhD I taught various German and History courses and planned to have an academic career. But as there were no full-time jobs available, and I had a young family to support, I couldn't wait around until a suitable vacancy arose. At that time I'd been working each year for the Institute of Agricultural Development in Central and Eastern Europe. I translated (and continue to translate) an annual brochure about the academic activities of the Institute. Although I certainly wasn't an agricultural specialist, at least I had a bit of knowledge about the region. Since them I've translated all kinds of topics and publications, but now I concentrate on novels.
Which German book do you like the best and why?

The second question is too difficult to answer. I have read many German books (as a student, translator or just for my own pleasure!). One author I particularly like is Joseph Roth, especially because his work deals with topics which interest me from a historical persepective.
Is there a particular book you would like to translate?

A book which I'd one day like to translate is Kirbisch, an epic poem by Anton Wildgans from 1927. This lesser known Austrian writer is generally regarded as second class, but Kirbisch is his masterwork and I was very impressed by it.

  • Steven Uhly: Kingdom of Twilight (Königreich der Dämmerung). MacLehose Press, 2017
  • Farida Khalaf (with Andrea C Hoffmann): The Girl who Beat ISIS (Das Mädchen, das den ISIS besiegte). Square Peg, 2016
  • Hans Herbert Grimm: Schlump (Schlump). Vintage Books, 2015
  • Jörg Fauser: Raw Material (Rohstoff). Clerkenwell Press, 2014
  • Timur Vermes: Look Who’s Back (Er ist wieder da). MacLehose Press, 2014
  • Birgit Vanderbecke: The Mussel Feast (Das Muschelessen). Peirene Press, 2013
  • Katharina Hagena: The Taste of Apple Seeds (Der Geschmack von Apfelkernen). Atlantic Books, 2013.
  • Daniel Glattauer: Gut gegen Nordwind (Love Virtually). MacLehose Press, 2011
  • FC Delius: Portrait of the Mother as a Young Woman (Bildnis der Mutter als junge Frau). Peirene Press, 2010
  • Ruth Maier: Ruth Maier’s Diary (Ruth Maiers Tagebuch). Harvill Secker, 2009
  • Paulus Hochgatterer: The Sweetness of Life (Die Süße des Lebens). MacLehose Press, 2008