Last 11 months have been a roller coaster. Towards the end of my PhD last year, I applied to few places, did not get any offers. My PhD advisor offered me a interim postdoc to support myself while I searched for other positions.

To begin my postdoc, I had to get my work permit. So, I decided not to go to my home country and stay 2 months till I get my work permit and then take a month break before joining my PhD supervisor as a postdoc.

Then covid happened. My work permit processing got delayed. My source of income got indefinitely postponed. I lost all motivation to work and search for jobs.

Finally, I got my permit in June. And since June I am working on the postdoc position diligently. Since January,I had wasted 5 months doing nothing. But since June, I have worked on different projects. Submitted two papers. Have plans for more.

Now, I won't be able to move out of my current country of residence due to covid restrictions. And my PhD advisor offered me an extension on the initial contract till the end of next year.

I am worrying about how it would look to future employers. I already have a 10 months gap between my master's and starting my PhD.

I am very worried. Though I know I can publish 6-7 journal papers till the mid of next year, I am worried about my CV.

My mind says to concentrate on the current job. Keep applying but to accept the possibility that I won't get anything. One year is enough to make a huge change in CV. I should work hard on this postdoc position and consider myself lucky to have this job in the current situation.

What do you think? Thank you for reading the entire thing.

  • 10
    "Though I know I can publish 6-7 journal papers till the mid of next year" To me, this looks like an incredible large number. In my field, it would basically be impossible (unless you collaborate a lot, an example would be only doing statistical analysis).
    – user9482
    Oct 13, 2020 at 8:48
  • 11
    We can't really make your life decisions for you. What is your actual, specific question?
    – user9482
    Oct 13, 2020 at 8:49
  • You don't seem to have any options, so what do you want us to say? "Don't quit your job?" Oct 13, 2020 at 16:07
  • Maaaaan... If I were able to publish 7 articles in less than a year, I would consider myself to be the "king of the world"... Oct 13, 2020 at 22:24

2 Answers 2


Don't worry about gaps that are easy to explain, especially by something that will have affected everyone to some extend, such as Covid in 2020/2021 (and hopefully not any longer...).

Keep working on your postdoc, and keep applying to positions that are in your interest.

Besides that, it is totally normal to have a few months between two positions every now and then. I'd love to have such a gap by the way, to take a long holiday without having to explain anything.

  • Yes. You can only do what you can do. And you can't erase the past. Make the best use of the opportunities open to you and search for other opportunities.
    – Buffy
    Oct 13, 2020 at 11:29

Interim postdocs are perfectly normal (in my field). Especially considering the a Covid situation this is not going to be a red flag.

Publishing lots of papers will turn you into a strong candidate.

On a side note: focus on actionable things and clear questions. Your post doesn't really include anything but asking the internet how you should feel. That does not strike me as productive.

  • It's also worth noting that, from the outside, it's not obvious that you're in an "interim" position. Even if the initial offer was mostly meant to help you out, it's become a real job since you can legitimately say "I stuck around to work on a few things, which were published as Matscinm et al. (2020a) and Matscinm et al. (2020b)."
    – Matt
    Oct 13, 2020 at 19:45

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