What is Wicked Translations?
Wicked Translations is a boutique translation and writing practice specialising in all things sex-related — from sex education materials to adult products and services to erotic fiction.
I’m Tom Ellett, aka the Wicked Translator. I translate into English, my native language, from Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch and German. I also provide English copywriting and editing services.
Whether it is intended to entertain or to educate, adult content requires top-notch writing skills to catch and hold the reader’s attention. E-books and print-on-demand technology have opened up new self-publication opportunities for sex educators and writers of erotic fiction. The English-speaking market is the largest in the world; the United States alone accounts for more than a quarter of global consumer spending. I enable Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch and German authors to access this market through translations that communicate, educate and titillate.
Good translation is like good sex — it’s all about communication. It’s not simply a matter of substituting words in one language for words in another. It’s about communicating the message, tone, intensity and pace of the original text in a way that resonates with readers in the target language.
Sex education materials need to be carefully and sensitively written. What works in one language and culture may not work in another. With two decades of experience as a professional translator, I can help you strike the right tone in English — whether you want to be cool and clinical or cheeky and colloquial.
Erotic writing is a delicate art in any language. The wrong words can be a big turn-off. A successful translation captures the passion and pace of the original, evokes the same response, and appeals to the reader’s senses and emotions in the target language.
Who is behind Wicked Translations?
aka the Wicked Translator
I have been in business for more than 20 years as Albascan Communications, crafting well-written translations from Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch and German into English.
Background and experience
Professional memberships and certifications
The Back Story
How I became a Wicked Translator
It all started when one of my long-standing translation agency clients asked me to translate some sex education materials for RFSU, the Swedish Association for Sexuality Education. Over the months and years that followed, this client came back with more projects in the same field. The materials covered the full spectrum of sex education: the anatomical and physical side, the emotional and psychological aspects, and the related social and political issues.
I was happy to take on these projects. Some of the associated research — like compiling a word cloud of slang terms for masturbation — turned out to be way more fun than researching the dry technical and bureaucratic terminology typically involved in commercial translation projects!
One thing led to another, and in 2013 I was commissioned by the Swedish author Malva B to translate Begär—oanständiga berättelser, her debut collection of erotic fiction, into English. This international odyssey featuring intelligent contemporary women of all ages and sexual preferences proved a hit in its native Sweden and was voted the best short-story collection in a readers’ poll by the literary magazine Vi Läser. My English translation, Desire—erotic short stories, is available in EPUB and Kindle editions.
A way with wicked words
Not all translators are comfortable working with erotica and adult content. But it turns out that I have a way with wicked words — a knack for capturing the atmosphere and setting the pace. Over the past few years, I have translated several more works of erotic fiction from German and Swedish to English. Please see the portfolio section for some examples.
Wicked Translations is a sex-positive business, and I am open to translating material featuring a wide range of sexual activities and diverse expressions of sexuality and gender. However, I will refuse projects advocating non-consensual activities or the exploitation of minors and other vulnerable groups.
Links to some of my published translations
Sex education materials
What my clients say
author of Desire—erotic short stories
“I was astonished by Tom Ellett’s accurate and nuanced translation and impressed how he dealt with some pretty country-specific expressions. Actually, an American friend of mine, who is also a writer, afterwards read Tom’s whole translation of my book, and told me that it was so good one couldn’t even notice it was a translation.
“It has indeed been a real pleasure to work with Tom. He is patient and a true team player, who met all agreed deadlines and was very responsive to all my feedback and questions. Tom is the kind of professional that loves his job and therefore never hesitates to go the extra mile to finalise a great product. Being a perfectionist, that is something I really appreciate.”