Pearce has spent three weeks on trial at Meadow Lane this summer and appears to have done enough to earn a permanent deal.
Short told Magpies Player: "We're talking now and are hoping to get a contract sorted out for him.
"His attitude has been first class. He's a long way from the finished article but he's got a lot of years in front of him.
"I think maybe because I played in that position I can help him. I never had his ability on the ball, he's an outstanding footballer but he has to know when and where to do those things."