“Where do you see yourself in five years?”

I had a job interview today, and my prospective employer asked me that. It’s a pretty typical interview question. The interviewer wants to make sure the interviewee (that’s such an odd-looking word!) has some sort of goals planned for his or her future; I’m guessing it’s indicative of a more stable personality, someone who’s less likely to flake out and bail on a job.

Anyway, any other time I’ve been asked this question (or a variant; sometimes the amount of time is less, sometimes it’s more), I’ve managed to come up with some vague-yet-satisfying answer for the interviewer. At least, I assume so, since more often than not, I’ve gotten the jobs I’ve been interviewed for. But today I actually had a pretty definitive answer. I replied, “Well, eventually I’d like to be freelance editing full-time.” I realize that that still sounds somewhat vague, but I also said, “I’ve been reading from other editors that most people can’t just jump into full-time editing, and I’ve realized it’s true. I need time to build up a roster of clients before I can go full-time.” The lady interviewing me seemed pleased with my answer and said that it sounded like a good goal to have.

So, what do you know? I’ve got goals! And I’m going to do this. Not today, not tomorrow, and probably not next week. But I will do it.

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