I had already asked a question here Just to provide a gist, I was being chosen as a third candidate for the PhD grant and there was only single vacancy.
Now the 1st chosen candidate has been approved another grant and the position is now open again. This information is been communicated by professor, and he initiated the conversation this time.
But the position will only be available after six months. My situation is bit complex: Due to some family issues, I denied couple of other opportunities. I am in talks with one other position, for which I am almost selected (this is what I feel). This position will start from April/May 2016. I am genuinely interested in both the positions as their topics overlap with my previous work.
Now, how what should I communicate back to the professor? I would not want to write it off. It’s safe to have this position on the stack. But at the same time, I would not want to give him a word that I will definitely be his student. How do I tactically say this: “I am keeping you for an option; if I get better position than this, I will go there; if I do not get anything else, I will join you.” I would also like to ask politely: “Why don’t you try harder and create a position till March/April? I would be happy to join you.”
At present, I have two options open and I do not mind going ahead with any of them. Note that I am not asking whom to chose.