So I had an interview yesterday. Or at least I think it was an interview -- the interviewers had copies of my resume, I brought work samples, and we talked about future work possibilities.
But it wasn't an interview in the traditional sense: there was no coveted job on the line, and my expectations were (and remain) fairly low.
Now, I have gone for many an interview. Some have been fantastic, leading to successful stints and professional relationships that lasted long after I left the employer. Others ... notsomuch. I remember one particularly awful experience in the basement of a ski lodge that left me crying, broken down by the sheer struggle of working in a field that didn't fit. Needles to say I didn't get the job.
As a freelancer I have a much different frame of reference when it comes to dealing with higher-ups. When I meet or speak by phone with editors it's mostly about content, results, projects. We try to find what will fit -- we don't try to find that elusive bi-weekly paycheque. And I've been told (I believe it was by Craig Silverman at a PWAC event last year) that face-time really counts when it comes to getting gigs as a freelance journalist.
I could definitely have been more prepared for this 'meeting,' but I took the advice of a contact who has worked for years with this organization. She said be yourself -- so I was. Doesn't mean that self -- skill set, and all -- can't change, but they should know the truth about where I am now. I don't need to fake enthusiasm or sincerity, at least with this employer. I feel it's my dream employer and I feel like I've entered some other, better world when I consume their content.
So I will do more of this, and get better at it. I will take what I've got and see what they have, and see if we can't make something fit.