In the publishing phase, the finalized text is submitted for formatting. Translators may move to a town or center for a month or more to work with publications specialists who will help them prepare the text. This can be a stressful time, and even more so if the translation team has to travel far from friends, family, and familiar surroundings. But thanks to technology, much of the preparatory work can be completed on location, even in remote language communities.
The translation team works with formatters and other publications staff to verify spelling and punctuation, finalize page layout, and position illustrations, maps, and picture captions. After testing out illustrations in the community, they must obtain permission to use them from copyright holders. If the book is going to be printed with two columns per page, the lines will be quite short, and someone will need to check how any longer words have been or should be hyphenated. Finally, the team must proof the complete final text, checking references and page numbers and ensuring that the text is error free.
Next the files are given to a printing company. In some cases a local printer may be chosen, but if one is not available, an outside agency such as a Bible society is often used. The printing and binding stage will usually take three to six months. Sometimes this process is delayed because of difficulty obtaining or printing on the special thin paper that is usually used for Bibles.
Audio Scripture Players
Many of the people we work with come from oral societies that either don't read or simply prefer to listen to Scripture rather than read it. So we often partner with organizations like MegaVoice and Faith Comes By Hearing to produce audio recordings of the translated Scripture. These recordings are then placed on durable solar-powered devices like the Proclaimer or MegaVoice player.
Video is an effective way for people to see Scripture come to life. The “JESUS” film is often one of the first pieces of Scripture to reach a community, because its script is based on the Gospel of Luke. Once translation of this book is complete, the film can be dubbed into the language. The Luke video and the Genesis video have also been dubbed into many languages.
Video Scripture for Signed Languages
Deaf people are among the most unreached in the world because they are less likely to be able to read or clearly understand something written in whatever language is being spoken around them. There are about four hundred signed languages in the world that may need translation, and each of them follows a completely different structure and thought process than spoken languages because they use visual concepts to convey meaning instead of words. This means that Scripture translations for the Deaf are usually in the form of videos of someone signing.
Finalized Scripture can also be put into digital form so that it can be read on cell phones and other electronic devices. Applications like YouVersion and Bible.is allow readers to download the Scripture and provide helpful tools for daily reading and study.