Day 54: What Do You Do When An Event Invite is Extended? Pt. 2

So, there you are, minding your blogging as you normally do, when you get an email:

It is a detailed Press Release with PDF’s, from ORA – Organization for the Rescue of Animals – Toronto, Canada, that invites you to attend a 1 day event, as a member of the Pet Media.

Attending the event itself would have been just $50, but the Plane fare, and hotel, well, the money for that would, as your cat would say, buy a hell of a lot of Kibble. 😀

You write back curious how they heard about your blog, and get this interesting reply inviting you to connect with them…

Dear Kiril (and the Nikita Cat and the Meowsings Blog Team!), Thank you so much for taking the time to write back to us and for adding a link for ORA-Organization for the Rescue of Animals to your sidebar. We are delighted to connect with you this way online! Yes, we found you via Cat Blogosphere and have been following your website with amusement and interest over the past several months.

You were included in our small circle of invited media friends because we feel that you would represent the issues with fairness and much wit on your blog. You are not afraid to be opinionated, it shows – and we love it!

Having said that, we sincerely hope that you will consider joining us in Toronto in a couple of weeks if you are able to do so.

It would be a pleasure and an honor for ORA to have you attend and cover Nathan Winograd’s first Toronto appearance for us on your blog.

If you are unable to attend, please consider adding a few words about the event in an appropriate place on Meowsings for your readers to help us gain further web exposure for this important event for animals. We look forward to your reply either way.

I wrote back thanking them for the invite, & wonderful compliments (They are one of the few organizations, that I know of, to have actually taken the time to get to understand my cat blog, and its unique approach to cat blogging, and show an obvious appreciation for it), and explaining why I couldn’t go, but that Elvira & Nikita would cover the story, and related websites, in a series of blog posts.


The subject of the No Kill Animal Shelter Movement and the books and websites of its leading promoter, Nathan Winograd, interested me so much that I decided to get his books and do a series of posts, not just a 1-shot simply plugging the event I had been invited to attend.

So, that April 2012, Nikita and Elvira wr0te a 7 part series (Just follow the links to succeeding chapters):

FNN SPECIAL REPURRT: The No Kill Animal Shelter Revolution 1

The series was shared by ORA, and also by the co-founder of  Blog Paws, who wrote, on her blog, “This is a serious issue! We are lucky to have these smart kitties covering it.”

A lot of interesting, thoughtful, comments, were also left throughout the series.

ORA wrote us: “Henceforth, please do consider us your allies for animals online, and thank you for the exposure you give to important animal issues, and keep up the good work! ”

The lesson from this is that even if you can’t attend some event you have been invited to, don’t close the door to covering it and its subject, entirely; be creative, use your imagination and contribute something that your readers will find worth reading, and that others, including those who invited you, will find worth sharing

Next up = Day 55: What Do You Do When An Event Invite is Extended? Pt. 3


Day 53: What Do You Do When An Event Invite is Extended?


No matter what type of blog you write, personal blog, pet blog, bike blog, or something else, social media interactions matter and can help you reach a wider audience, both short term and long term.

I know because, over the years, I have been invited to events by people, organizations and companies who reached out to me after learning about my blogs.

What do you do in those situations?


If you can attend the event and are comfortable with the things required of you in the sharing of your experience with your readership then, of course, you go notepad and camera in hand and have an interesting experience to share, most likely over several entries on your blog.

If you are unable to attend all is not lost. There may be another way for you to cover the event on you blog if the subject is of interest to you.

I want to share my 2 experiences with pet themed events:

In August 2011 I attended, along with a number of other pet bloggers, a red carpet event at the historic Orpheum Theatre in downtown Los Angeles.

It was a one-night only celebrity concert event; “CATS for Cats,” that helped raise funds for a wonderful local Los Angeles animal rescue, Kitty Bungalow Charm School for Wayward Cats.

I hadn’t planned to attend due to the cost of tickets, but in July I received an e-mail from one of the several sponsors of the event, Hartz, offering me a red carpet ticket and access to the exclusive “AfterPawty”:

“We are inviting several influential Cat Bloggers from the Los Angeles area to attend the event and feel that you fit the bill perfectly! We thought it might be something you’d like to attend, then blog about, or even live tweet from the red carpet or the show!”

I found myself interviewed on the red carpet and posed for pics, and another interview in front of a Hartz wall display. I also blogged about Hartz and its pet products, as well as wrote about the animal rescue. Both Hartz and Kitty Bungalow spread the word about my cat blog and its participation in this event.

The 6 part series of blog posts begins here (Just follow the links to the next post):

Daddy Kiril At Large: Cats For Cats – Introduction

Next up: How I covered an event I could not attend

Day 52: Social Media Uber Alles!

Have you ever wondered just how many social media websites there are on the internet?

Has the motto of the internet become “Social media above everything else!?”

As I write this it is Wednesday evening, I am about to head to bed, and the first of my 2 eye cancer surgeries, over the next few days, is tomorrow afternoon.

As I was signing up for a new site, to be discussed in future entries, the site offered me a list of 181 social media sites if I wanted to list any I belong to in my profile.

I’d say that maybe 150 of those sites listed are ones I’ve never heard of before.

Keep in mind that this list was put together with the purpose of the site in mind, and probably nowhere close to being comprehensive.


Day 48: Goodreads and Sharing Your Opinions

Goodreads says it is the world’s largest site for readers and book recommendations. Unlike Amazon its sole purpose in life is centered on books.

You can see which books your friends are reading, and be surprised that someone who hated English in High School now loves the classics, or that man’s man, he-man football and NASCAR loving friend, reads Harlequin novels. 😀

You can track the books you’re reading, have read, and want to read. You can check out your personalized book recommendations, tailored to all sorts of interests. You can not only rate a book you have read, but write a review.

Why would you want to share your thoughts on pet themed books, here, or get involved at all?   To make connections with other pet writers is part of it, just as with Amazon but this is also one more way to attract readers to your blog, not to mention some book publisher, or product manufacturer, might find it worth their while to ask you to advance review of something on your blog.   Also, doing reviews is another way to sharpen you writing skills.

It was real easy to set up an informative profile.

You control who can see your profile; the information on the profile tab, your bookshelves, your friend list, and other Goodreads members’ comments on your profile.

There are 19 types of update feeds to choose from; you decide what shows up on your profile and your friends’ homepages.

There are widgets that allow you to show off what you are reading on your blog, or any other website you have.

There is a huge collection of “Find at” links that you can add related to websites that “let you find the book you’re seeing at your favorite online book store, or any site that lets you search by ISBN in a URL. “

These are intended to link to sites that have an ISBN search and have a large catalogue of books.

When you initially join you are prompted to select 20 books from a host of predetermined categories, that you have read, and rate them. This allows Goodreads to make recommendation of books you might be interested in.

The good thing is that once beyond this you can look in other genres and sub-genres.

You can make lists of books you have read, or want to read, such as cats, and writing, let’s say even check out the list site, Listopia. I can list all the books in my collection that are still available and have an ISBN number.

There is a flourishing community on Goodreads: groups, creative writing, people and events. Goodreads Voice is an always updated collection of posts about new books, interviews, videos, blog posts, and other things.

Check out =

My Goodreads page =

Day 46: Friendship Via Social Media and Blogging Leads to Meeting At Last

Friends and pet bloggers meet in person at last!

Friends and pet bloggers meet in person at last!

A day that will live in infamy, for Boston, and America, began on a wonderful, exciting, note and while my friend and I have been as riveted and horrified by the images we have seen since we got home, Monday evening, I want to share a pair of images that, I hope, will bring a smile to your face, and help re-enforce the messages about the usefulness of social media that this series is sharing.

Nikita and Elvira give good LapCat!

Nikita and Elvira give good LapCat!

Marilynn Smith and I have known each other for several years but, until I moved here to Houston, had never met in person.

We rectified that, mid-day Monday, when I treated her to lunch in nearby Spring, where she lives.

Writeacher’s thoughts

Momma Grace & Company cat blog

A retired teacher, with a love for cats, of which she has several, Marilynn and I have a surprising connection that I, especially, find quite amusing to ponder.

You see, I was born in Pomona, Ca. in 1960, and lived my first 8 years in Claremont, the college town next door.

Guess who was going to college there between 1960 and 1963?

It is entirely possible that we crossed paths in the Claremont Village:

On the street as my parents wheeled me around in a stroller, or I was taking my first adventuresome steps on my own.

On a bus.

In a restaurant, or other business.

In the ladies room, somewhere, where I was getting my diaper changed, or being breast fed.

It’s a small world.

Day 43: Photography and the Blogger: How Did You Begin and Why?

Do you use photos on your blog? Have you ever sat down to reflect on when and why this part of your creativity became a part of what you do?

I began seriously taking photographs as a teen, in the 70’s and many of those photos were of family pets. Little did I know that I would still be doing so decades later as part of a blossoming writing career.


In the 80’s and early 90’s my photos tended toward cataloguing trips to visit relatives in Arizona and Colorado. My love of history, reading and even my interest in writing, pretty much dormant in the 90’s, led me to visit Tombstone, tour the town and its historic graveyard, and pose outside the 100+ year old town newspaper. Little did I know that I would become an online journalist writing major exposes on my blogs.


In 1998 I got my first computer and began contributing to an online community. I continued taking photos of places I went on my bike (since the mid-90’s) and my first plane rides, to weekend encounters with groups of online friends, in Phoenix and Chicago, in 2000 and 2001.   A trip with my sister to Las Vegas allowed me to pay tribute to the early creative writing influence of my teens, Star Trek.

I took photos of my original online creative muse, Nikita, and the first kitten he tried to mentor, Maximus. Little did I know that, the next year, I would take up blogging.


When I moved to Orange County I met the gregarious, bearded, hardcore socialist who drew out my talent for poetry.

It was only natural that I began to, almost from the start of my first personal blog and my bike blog, a decade ago, share photos, and take a notebook with me to record my thoughts on adventures to such places as the Getty Museum and the Reagan Library.

Next up:

The process of taking photos to go with blog posts: Which comes first, the writing or the photos?

Day 42: Hark! What Klout Throughout Yonder Internet Do You Have?

So, there you are, a humble cat, bat, or rat blogger, with years of writing behind you, 100 visitors a day mostly via Google searches, the occasional comment, a few friends on Facebook and Twitter, still trying to figure out Google Plus, and fascinating enough to spambots that 3000 of them a day stop by your blog to say hello.

And now, here’s this website encouraging you to see how much influence you have on your fellow users of the internet, through your use of a select group of social media sites; It takes you more than an hour to stop rolling on the floor with laughter, get back in your chair, and check out the website to see what it is all about.

Klout began in 2008 with the notion that we all have influence “the ability to drive action”. The purpose of the site is to show even you and me that we can influence the world and its future”.

Using Klout is supposed to empower you, the user, to unlock your influence and understand the power of your unique and powerful voice on others.

Back in November a friend tweeted that she had given me a “+K” on Klout. She had suggested I check it out, but I didn’t. The other day another friend did the same and, because my view on using social media tools had changed and I thought that learning to use the ones I was on, and learning about new ones would help me in my writing and platform building pursuits, I decided to join.

I will have more to say once my initial Klout Score and other info is calculated and shows up on my member page tomorrow.

When I finished signing up my initial score was 45, but I was assurred that would change as the system worked it’s magic evaluating all sorts of info from the social media sites I use that they track.

That could be good news or herald the coming of the apocalypse, so stay tuned.