Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Pet Bloggers Journey 2021

Today we're excited to be participating in the Pet Bloggers Journey 2021 hosted by Puppy In Training. It's a great way to join fellow bloggers in reflecting on the past year while making plans for the one to come.

When did you begin your blog and what do you currently write about on your blog?

I started blogging in August 2011. Mochas, Mysteries and Meows is the purr-fect destination for everyone who embraces a cozy, cat-centric lifestyle. 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 four decades of life with cats.

Name one thing about your blog, or one blogging goal that you accomplished during 2020, that made you most proud.

I'm extremely proud to have won my 2nd Muse Medallion and 4 more Certificates of Excellence in the Cat Writers' Association Communications Contest. 

Which of your 2020 posts was most popular with your audience? Why do you think it does so well?

Posts from my Fun Feline Finds column are consistently popular. Top of the list this year was one I wrote on Ziploc storage containers featuring cute graphics of Christmas cats. I guess cat people just love shopping for cat stuff!

What was the biggest blogging challenge you faced in 2020, and how did you tackle it?

Loss of focus was my greatest struggle in 2020. Between stress from both world events and family obligations I lost the ability to tune everything out and just write. I haven't tackled it yet because 2021 is shaping up to be much of the same. I'm going to try harder to crack down on myself though. 

Tell us one thing you learned in 2020 that can help us all become better bloggers.

Write what you're inspired to write. Don't try to force something that just isn't there. Be yourself, be authentic, write from the heart.

What are your top three goals for 2021?

My main goal is to get back to writing evergreen content. My writing life suffered in 2020 for the same reasons as my reading life. I also plan to jumpstart Mudpie's interview series with real and fictional felines, and the good news is this will start on Friday! She's a tortie and a very chatty girl!

In the perfect world, where do you see yourself and your blog 1 year from now?

I just hope to still have a voice online. With the current attacks on our freedom of speech, I'm not so sure. 

If you had a $1,000 to spend on your blog how would you spend it?

I would spend half on cat-related items we could feature on our blog, and the other half on Mudpie's beloved squeezies. She is the star of the show, after all, and deserves proper compensation!

What is one skill you’d like to learn or improve in 2021?

Photo editing and blog graphics. Last year I cancelled my paid PicMonkey subscription because I didn't feel I was using it enough to warrant the cost, but since then I've struggled to find an alternative.

If you could ask the pet blogging community for help with one challenge you’re having with your blog, what would it be?

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!!!


Mickey's Musings said...

Sounds like a great idea to set goals for the year.
It's a good way to focus on what is important :)
Purrs, Julie

Patricia T said...

Great post, Melissa. I always look forward to your posts...and a daily dose of Mudpie. The past year has been difficult and seeing that sweet face makes me happy. Mudpie definitely needs her squeezie compensation! :)

Brian's Home Blog said...

You did a good job answering those and we enjoyed reading your answers!

Lola The Rescued Cat said...

We loved reading your answers. Our mom had trouble focusing this year and still struggles with it into 2021. It takes her forever to get a post done. We love you ladies and love reading everything you post.

Eastside Cats said...

2020 was such a roller-coaster!
I lost my ability to read new-to-me books, and relied on re-reading book series that I'd adored once. Guess I couldn't handle a surprise ending!
Now, I've been in my new job position since August, and working from home seems normal. Having cats underfoot while working is FABULOUS!

Athena Cat Goddess Wise Kitty said...

Great interview. Mum can so relate. She is struggling to write because of so much stress and worry and that's why she only does short posts now and featuring mostly photography and art. She and I both reckon it's the photos of me people want to see anyway 😻

Timmy Tomcat said...

A really nice post as it is always nice to get to know the writer who is driving the posts we see. Keep up the great work

Marvelous Marv said...

We loved reading your answers! Yes 2020 was a roller coaster! |Thanks for sharing with us! Have a terrificially Happy Day!

Sandee said...

Great answers to the questions. Here's hoping 2021 is a fabulous year.

Have a terrific day. ♥

pilch92 said...

Great answers. Those were well deserved certificates and medallions and I bet you will get more this year. XO

Catscue Cat Mom said...

Fun answers! I think Mudpie should get more squeezies too.

The Florida Furkids said...

Focus seems to be a problem for a lot of us. Great answers!!

The Florida Furkids

meowmeowmans said...

Oh yeah. 2020 was a bear, for sure. We really enjoyed reading your answers to these questions, and learning more about you and your awesome blog!

Colby, Raven, Elsa said...

2020 was a difficult year. I hope you're able to get back to a normal routine in 2021. It's scary the way things are getting censored on different platforms. Hopefully things are better this year. I use Canva and Photoshop for my image editors, but they a pay for both programs. I'm not sure what free options work well. I know GIMP is a popular open source image editing software, but I haven't really used it. Thanks for participating and I hope you have a great 2021!

Cathy Keisha said...

If you had $1,000, you could pay us to make your graphics. MOL! Cool answers.

Sweet Purrfections said...

I know what you mean about 2020 being a challenging year. I found myself losing some focus, but tried to push through to post at least 2 posts a month. Good luck with your 2021 goals.

Paws News for Cat Lovers said...

I love the idea of the Mudpie interviews. What a great idea to have the interviews done by a cat, not a human. Congrats on your awards, and I am sure you will do well in 2021. I use Canva for design - they have a free version, but the paid one, is so much better. It's so much easier than Photoshop, and you can make your designs very quickly, which will give you more time to spend on your blog.

M Dawson said...

I can sympathise with the lack of motivation when you feel overwhelmed BUT I know you and Mudpie will be back and aiming for the sky in 2021.

Keep up the book reviews and the photos that make me smile!

Peaches and Paprika said...

Hi there I'm just today catching up with everyone's blog journey's including yours. I think you should post a link to your MUSE award in the question you answered re being proud of it. We bloggers (and I sure include myself) have trouble splaying these accomplishments sometimes. I for one, would love to see it.

You are in good company being "not inspired to write' in 2020. But you are still keeping on which is great!

My favorite parts of your blog 1) anything to do with country western postings and ) your book review. You write really well and this showcases your writing while involving others (the subjects of your interview.)

Sending warm wishes for 2021!

Britt K said...

So many people struggled with focus in 2020, you definitely weren't alone with that. I can't believe how many things all happened in a single year. Talk about sending us all for a loop! That being said, you've kept this blog going throughout all the craziness and the unknown, and that's a great accomplishment!

As a fellow tortie lover and addict (we have 2 in the house right now) I couldn't stop laughing (and nodding) when I read about her being chatty. Oh boy, are they ever! I wouldn't trade our torties for the world but they definitely keep our lives interesting!

Unknown said...

Congrats on the 2nd Muse Medallion and 4 Certificates of Excellence in the Cat Writers' Association Communications Contest.

It’s been a hard year when it comes to focusing. Hopefully 2021 will be better. Thanks for sharing your journey!

Best of luck.

Unknown said...

"Write what you're inspired to write. Don't try to force something that just isn't there. Be yourself, be authentic, write from the heart."

I love this line! I feel like this is a major thing that I learned this year!

Also have to say that I love seeing your blog button on the sidebar. Reminds me of my book blogger Blogspot days... ahh memories haha.

Thanks for sharing!

Niki @ Love Newfoundlands

FidoseofReality said...

Write what you are inspired to write is such a great comment. You hit the nail on the head. So many folks, myself included, had a hard time in 2020 and together, we are in this. I feel like pet bloggers totally understand and we will prevail. I have known you for what seems like forever in the pet blogosphere. Keep up the great work!

Kimberly Gauthier, Dog Nutrition Blogger for Keep the Tail Wagging said...

Congratulations on surviving another year. It's fun to read a post from someone who started their blog the same year I started mine. Crazy how time flies.

You mentioned canceling PicMonkey - I did the same. I moved over to Canva and I love it. I also use an app called Ripl which allows me to create beautiful graphics and videos on my phone to share on Instagram, FB, Pinterest, and TikTok.

I hope you have a better 2021. I hear ya when you say that it's all shaping up to be the same. It's crazy how much has changed over the past year.