Oh heck I just found out about ceilidh.space and my mind is blown by the idea of a Scottish Gaelic/Gaidhlig-friendly Mastodon instance and how powerful Mastodon could be as a language learning tool, particularly for smaller languages without good learning resources.
I am still practicing and doing my best though! It is a beautiful, endangered language and I care a lot about its continued survival.
I also get asked to do written translations of #Gaelic #scottishGaelic #Gaidhlig a ton and gotta say:
a) please don't, I learned it verbally so the written rules and grammar are hard. I will screw it up, and then I'll feel bad as a native speaker who cannae write it well.
b) translating English phrases is VERY difficult, don't trust non-pro translations.
C) pay your professionals. Learning Gaidhlig is hard & often expensive. Professional translators are rare. Pay the pros for their work.
Oh one more thing and this is the important
Despite my grumbles about bad translations, DON'T BE AFRAID TO TRY GAIDHLIG. Sing in it! Put it in your stories! Use it gratuitously! Appropriate the heck outta my culture, friends!
Build fantasy worlds that include it as a core element of your worldbuilding! (I love doing this in my novels.)
Gaidhlig is dying from lack of use and it makes me happy whenever I see it in a book or game or or comic or tweet or toot.
You know what? I'm writing a book that draws heavily on Irish folklore. I used a lot of Gaeilge (with correct translations worked into the text, of course), and the writing group I was in got mad whenever I did so. They called it "annoying", "lazy", and "downright stupid".
I left the group eventually, but that has unfortunately stuck with me. Now I'm afraid to use this awesome language anywhere.
@fidgety Oh, that breaks my heart. My local area has a sneering attitude towards Gaidhlig as a "waste of money" to save and promote so I stopped speaking it locally, to my detriment, and my books or online are one of the few places I still let it show.
Your critique groups were, to be blunt, idiots. It's not an uncommon brand of 'my culture is the best' daftness either: I know Latino authors who hear similar about including Spanish.
@emaree I feel the same way about Irish as you do Scottish: These are tenacious languages that somehow survived, and if I can do my little part to save them, then I HAVE to.
I'm an American, so I have nobody to speak it to. Instead, I wander around the house, repeating random words and phrases whenever I'm by myself.
@emaree with other less common but still extant North European languages (including dialects of English, Scots, Dutch and German) there was much disagreement over grammar and spelling for written content; although consensus is developing and wider spread of Unicode on computers gives you more characters to use (i.e å (from DK) finding its way into some German dialects and ø now being used in Scots and Gronings), there are also keyboard layouts that make it easier to use accented characters
@vfrmedia @emaree Not only North European languages. French dialects also had variations, and them being mostly spoken, there was no consensus for writing, and many of them almost disappeared before there ws. There has been since then efforts to revive those dialects, and with that normalizations have been proposed, although those are in fact different from the original dialect precisely because they use consensus to normalize things, and so present a form of the dialect that was never spoken.
@emaree hello! Gotta say I'm super excited to meet a native speaker. I've only been learning for a few weeks now so I still have to google-translate a lot.
I'm an American but my mother's family was from Greenock and I've always been very interested in my Scottish heritage, so learning the language just felt like a good way to connect with the culture a bit
@balrogboogie this is so exciting! If I can help in any way I'm here, I can always ring up my mum with questions too.
I love hearing about speakers from USA and Canada because you folks have so much enthusiasm and joy for it that I rarely see here! You rock, thank you for learning it!
@emaree I've always wanted to learn Scottish Gaelic, but I've no idea where to start. I found the Duolingo language app recently and was heartbroken to see that it has Irish Gaelic and Welsh, but no Scottish stuff yet. I've still got a lot of Japanese to learn, but my progress so far has taught me that I at least have the ability to learn new languages. I want to keep using that.