Science Fiction Novelist
A Russian Reference for Transient
Posted on April 29, 2017
Category: Zeedub Inkwell
Zachry Wheeler, Science Fiction Novelist

Oddly enough, one of the most common questions I get about my debut novel Transient has nothing to do with the plot or characters. On a semi-regular basis, a reader will ask me “What does [some Russian phrase] mean?”

For anyone needing a non-spoiler explanation, the sociopolitical environment of Transient involves the use of phonetic Russian for greetings and exclamations. You can think of it like the blended usage of Mandarin in Firefly and Serenity. And if you still have no idea what I’m talking out, then you’re making bad life choices.

I recently stumbled upon a translation page for the Mandarin used in Firefly. It then occurred to me that a Russian reference for Transient would be useful to readers. And so, I decided to share the exact list I constructed to aid in writing the book. Most of them do not appear in the published version, but I did use them all at one point or another. Keep in mind that these are phonetic translations, as the Russian alphabet uses different characters.

In alphabetical order:

Ahueyet (WTF)
Blyat (Shit : used as an exclamation)
Bolshoe spasibo (Thank you very much)
Bozhe moi (OMG)
Bychit (Behave like a bull)
Da (Yes)
Dasvidania (Good bye)
Dobry dyen (Good day)
Dobry vecher (Good evening)
Dobroye utro (Good morning)
Droog (Friend)
Harasho (I’m fine)
Hooy na ny (No fucking way)
Izvinite (Sorry)
Kak dyela? (How are you?)
Mudak (Asshole)
Neechevo srashnava (No harm)
Neeploha (Not so bad)
Nyet (No)
Nyezashta (That’s all right)
Ohooiet (Holy fuck)
Ooveedeemsya (See you)
Otva li (Fuck off)
Paka (Bye-bye : informal)
Pazhalusta (You’re welcome)
Pizdec (Shit : used as an exclamation)
Prahsteetye (Sorry)
Privyet (Hi : informal)
Proschaite (Farewell)
Schasleevava pootee (Have a nice trip)
Shto? (What?)
Spakoyni nochi (Good night)
Spasibo (Thank you)
Suka blyat (Whore bitch : used as an exclamation)
Ty che blyad? (What the fuck?)
Udachi (Good luck)
Yobani vrot (Fucked in the mouth : used as an exclamation)
Za druzhbu (To friendship : a toast)
Za zdorovye (To health : a toast)
Zatknis (Shut up)
Zdrastvootie (Hello)

Learn more:
The Long Fought Story of Transient
Transient 2.0: How a Fresh Edit Exposed a Hidden Writing Crutch
To The Horses! The Heartbreaking Reality Behind Doren’s Tragic Toast

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