Tuesday, January 22, 2019

2019 Pet Blogger Challenge

Today we're excited to be participating in the 2019 Pet Blogger Challenge hosted by GoPetFriendly.com. It's a great way to join fellow bloggers in reflecting on the past year while making plans for the one to come.


For those who may be visiting your blog for the first time, how long have you been blogging and what is your main topic?

I started blogging in August 2011. Mochas, Mysteries and Meows is the purr-fect destination for everyone who embraces a cozy, cat-centric lifestyle: curling up on the couch with a warm beverage, a great book, and a cat...or 3. It's primary focus is to chronicle my cat lady life with Mudpie alongside reviews of products for both cats and cat moms and sharing the knowledge I've accumulated in three decades of life with cats.

What was your proudest blogging moment of 2018?

I actually have 3 really proud moments to share. First, I won 5 Certificates of Excellence in the Cat Writers' Association Communications Contest. Two came in the Short Story and Column categories which I never thought I would have a shot at.

I also fulfilled my goal of this blog leading to freelance writing projects as I started writing two articles per month for the Canidae pet food blog.

Not directly related to the blog, but I also had two poems published in a book called The Whole Kitten Cat Boodle. (How cool is it to see your name on the cover of a book?!?!?!)


What was the biggest blogging challenge you faced in 2018, and how did/will you tackle it?

I'm embarrassed to say that in 2018 I lost my reading mojo. I don't know if I've been reading too much of the same thing for too long or what, but for much of the year continuing through today I'm not getting the enjoyment out of my reading time that I used to and have had to put it on the back burner. I don't really know what the solution is but to give it some time and hope it passes. I've always loved reading so much, I don't want to force myself into now and end up never wanting to go back.

Which of your 2018 blog posts was your favorite and why? (Please include a link.)

Our Purrfect 10 series as a whole was my favorite, especially the ones on Morris the 9Lives cat, Edgar Allan Poe's tortie Cattarina, and fascinating facts about white cats. I have so much fun researching these posts!


Which of your 2018 posts was most popular with your audience? Why do you think it does so well?

Our Tuft + Paw giveaway was tremendously popular, likely because our readers love to pampurr their fur babies with the kinds of goodies that only a company like Tuft + Paw can provide.

Did you implement a new series, feature, or practice on your blog in 2018 that you’re enjoying?

This spring I started participating in a blog hop that reflects another passion of mine that coincidentally also begins with an "M" - Melissa's mochas, mysteries, meows, and now music! The Mewsic Moves Me blog hop takes place each Monday and typically has a theme that you're supposed to choose songs around. The country music I grew up with in the 70s and 80s has always remained close to my heart, and joining this hop has reignited that spark. Regular readers know these posts typically end up revolving around Conway Twitty in some way, who I adore beyond words. (Some might argue beyond reason...LOL)

As the social media landscape changes, how are you promoting your blog posts and connecting with new readers?

I've done a terrible job at keeping up with the changes. I post to Facebook daily, sometimes Instagram, and that's about it. I also regularly join blog hops. My strategy is definitely something I need to work on.


Looking forward to 2019, if you accomplish only one thing through your blog, what do you hope it is?

I want to find new ways to grow our audience. I feel like there are so many pet blogs out there now that it's easy to get lost in the shuffle. Finding new ways to "stand out" is important to succeeding long term.

What steps are you planning to take to ensure you reach your goal?

No ideas at this time...but I'm taking suggestions!

Now it’s your turn! How can we help? Is there an area where you could use some advice, or an aspect of your blog that you’d like input on? Share it here, and we’ll answer you in comments!

I would love to ask our readers what they want to see more of on the blog. Do you have a favorite feature? A topic you would like us to cover? Please let us know!!!


27 comments:

Summer at sparklecat.com said...

Those were great answers! My human and I have no clue as to what we're doing to improve our blog in 2019 either, honestly!

Lone Star Cats said...

My momma needs to figger out what we should work on dis year too, MOL!

Katie Isabella said...

My mom says she just keeps on truckin'. She has no idea how to change my bloggie. IT's a platform for showing loves, I fink.

Brian said...

We enjoyed reading your answers and we always like seeing whatever you come up with!

Patricia T said...

I love your blog (and Mudpie). Thanks for all you do!

Holly said...

I loved reading through your purrfect 10 series.

Eastside Cats said...

First time I've heard of this book! On my 'to read' list now! Glad to have found your blog; wish I knew how to fix my blog comments, so I can reply to them! Things got weird with the change over, and I'm still behind the times, I fear.

Ruby's Rescued Life said...

Congrats on the freelance work AND being published in the book. Both are AMAZING accomplishments and you should be very proud.

I always enjoy your posts which feature all the cool cat products. You always find such interesting items to include. Of course, I also enjoy all the adorable photos!

Pamela said...

Wow, you kicked butt in 2018. I can't wait to see what 2019 brings.

Since you mentioned your new interest on music, I have to share a song with you. It's not country. But with Queen mania happening around the Bohemian Rhapsody movie, it's timely.

Freddie Mercury was dying when Queen recorded their last album together, Innuendo. It was a very personal effort with Freddie working hard to record the album, finishing it just weeks before he died. One of the silly things he wanted to record was a song about his cat Delilah. It's not a great song. But don't you love someone whose biggest passion is their cat? You can hear it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vuXnFN2kByM

The Swiss Cats said...

Concatulations on your freelance work ! We enjoyed reading your answers ! Purrs

Priscilla King said...

I finally got the Tortie Tuesday book review up and shared with all the target web sites except my own Live Journal. So few cyberchores take so much time, as cyberspace becomes so cluttered...

Three Chatty Cats said...

That's so cool that you were published in a book!

Momma Kat and Her Bear Cat said...

SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!! THAT BELLY!!!! I don't think we've seen Mudpie's belly before! I know it's supposed to be all serious and stuff -- but maybe you'll forgive my departure from that because you know how wonderful her tortie belly is too!

Lola The Rescued Cat said...

We loved your answers! Promoting our blog is a big challenge for us. We need to develop a better strategy.

Amy said...

Wow, you had a fantastic 2018! Congratulations on all of your accomplishments. It seems that what you're doing is working, so all the best to you this year.

Thanks so much for taking the Challenge, and I hope your love of reading returns.

pilch92 15andmeowing said...

Congratulations on all you accomplished in 2018! I am sure you will do even more this year.

Cathy Keisha said...

Sounds like 2018 was a good year for the 4Ms—mochas, mysteries, meows and music. Who needs books when you have music?

Caren Gittleman said...

I enjoyed this Melissa and what resonated with me was this " I don't know if I've been reading too much of the same thing for too long or what, but for much of the year continuing through today I'm not getting the enjoyment out of my reading time that I used to and have had to put it on the back burner. I don't really know what the solution is but to give it some time and hope it passes"

I feel EXACTLY the same........I have been blogging since 2009 and like you, read TONS of books per year........I started losing my desire to read many cat (and dog books) approx one year ago. So far for me, it hasn't changed.....I think it was reading too much of the same thing

Zazie Todd, PhD, for Companion Animal Psychology said...

Congratulations on those writing achievements! That's fabulous. I don't really know what I should be planning for 2019 either, but it sounds like you have a lot to build on. It's nice to meet you - and your kitties are beautiful!

The Menagerie Mom said...

How did I not know about your published poems?!? I will definitely be reading that book. When it comes to your blog, I enjoy visiting it so very much. I know you will find ways to keep expanding your audience and reach, because you have such wonderful knowledge to share with the world.

H said...

Hi - I just read your feral cat article. I'm a dog person so it was great info for me. It's a pleasure to get to know you through the pet blogger challenge and here's to a great 2019.

Peaches and Paprika said...

HI MoM OF Mudpie, you are one of the bloggers with an outstanding niche of your own (in my opinion) so I was flabbergasted you did not mention concentrating on it because it is o so cool! . Your theme of the Mysteries Mochas and Meows, combined with the cozy ambience combined with the many writings you do, book reviews product reviews, this poem...I really think that is totally your niche and its an area I don't see much so if you enjoy the writing you do and have others read it, that seems like a natural direction for you in which u are already a star and will become more so. I see more cozy moments, candlelight, tea or coffee, book reviews....I'm not sure how to turn that into revenue but its a beautiful niche.

Re reading, I am wondering...sometimes when you are doing a lot of writing it is hard to also do reading at the same period...I'm not sure if that may be a contributing factor...

Now having said all that (the above) you also asked what we like to see more of, because actually what I like best are your ADORABLE pictures of enchanting MUDPIE! I always look forward to seeing her in all her different postures and positions and expressions, especially in Caturday Art. She is one cool babe. Good luck to you both!!

Dash Kitten said...

Getting strategy right is something that needs work. I do not do it very well at all so you do not read that path alone! Go for it Melissa you CAN do it.

You are a writer and it's always great to see a writer in print. Poems is something I could never ever do so well done there.

Good luck in 2019 I know you will do brilliantly! Mudpie and you ROCK!!

M. K. Clinton said...

You know I love you, Mudpie and your blog! I haven't had much time to read anything but books to my 2-year-old granddaughter. I hope your 2019 is amazing.

Chelle said...

Nice to "meet" you through the blog hop! I'm not really a cat person, since my fiance is allergic we can't have any cats of our own. I do have two small dogs who sometimes like to pretend to be cats, though. I love reading and will be sure to check out some of your book reviews! Best wishes for a happy 2019.
www.pawprintpetblog.com

Lindsay said...

I'm new to your blog through the blog hop and just wanted to say best of luck to you in 2019! I write about dogs but I also have a cat and he is the best! I've just followed you on Pinterest and Instagram.

Allison said...

Congrats on winning 5 Certificates of Excellence in the Cat Writers' Association Communications Contest! This is an incredible accomplishment.

Also kudos for your blog leading to freelance work. This is one of my goals for the near future.

I used to review books and over time lost my interest in reading. Now that I no longer review books, I still at times find my mind is too tired. The joy will return. You're right to give it time.

Yes, I agree with it being easy for a blog to get lost in the crowd. Mine is foremost a local blog for that reason. I'm not sure that I'm ready to compete against all the nation-wide pet blogs!