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Muse™ and Special Awards in CWA 2021 Communications Contest

My 2021 paintings of Sienna and Mariposa.
My 2021 paintings of Sienna and Mariposa won both certificates and MUSE™ medallions.

Well, the girls need to share a MUSE™ Medallion, but they seem to be okay with that!

This past weekend held the Cat Writers’ Association annual conference and the 2021 Communications Contest awards ceremony, both virtual. I learned in August that my entries had won six Certificates of Excellence, and after the awards announcements I can add three MUSE™ Medallions and one special award.

I am thrilled that my Spring 2021 article, Cooperative Care for Cats, in PetConnections Magazine won the special award, Fear Free Pets Award, sponsored by Fear Free Pets. Even before “fear free pets” existed and before I knew what “cooperative care for cats” was, I was doing my best to work with the cats I had rescued and fostered, especially years ago when there was little guidance on cat behavior. I’ve been following Fear Free since the idea, organization and website were established and learned so much that benefited the older and difficult kittens and young adult cats brought in through TNR by myself and others in the past decade. And when I attended Tabitha Kucera’s Cooperative Care for Cats webinar in February 2021 I was over the moon about the wealth of information about gentler handling of cats, working with each cats’ nature and with simple conditioning. My article was based on that webinar and other articles I’d read by her, as well as other resources scattered on the internet.

This was to be my Sunday post, but Sunday being Global Cat Day, of course there were kittens and a mom under a shed, a solo kitten under a deck (who since was finally trapped and went to a foster), and a friendly black cat (whose owner was since found), and lots of messaging about the kittens, and a webinar. No photos of the kittens yet! But I have some catching up to do.

About the awards

I am proud to enter my work in the annual Communications Contest given by the Cat Writers’ Association. I have entered materials in this contest since 2007 when I won my first awards. This very blog won a Muse Medallion for entertainment in the 2011, 2013, and 2016 contests and a Certificate of Excellence in the 2015 and 2019 Communications Contests.

Certificates of Excellence

Each entry was independently judged by three Professional CWA members. Winning a Certificate of Excellence means that the average of those three judges’ scores for the entry is 90 or above — a high bar to cross!

MUSE™ Medallions

The MUSE™ Medallion is awarded to the entry in each category receiving the highest average score from three independent judges. All judges are volunteers and are Professional Cat Writers’ Association members. To become eligible for a MUSE™ Medallion, each entry listed here has received an average score of at least 90, and has been awarded a Certificate of Excellence.

Special Awards

Special Awards are sponsored by various organizations, companies and individual to highlight and support information on a particular topic. They are judged by an outside judge and the entry’s status in the main contest categories doesn’t have any influence on its entry as a special award.

2021 Certificates and MUSE™ Medallions

Cooperative Care for Cats
SPECIAL AWARD: Fear Free Pets Award
Sponsored by Fear Free Pets
Published in PetConnections Magazine, Spring 2021 issue, page 24. You can read it in the archives, if you have trouble with the platform ISSUU, let me know.

They Are All Simply Cats
MUSE™ Medallion
Published in PetConnections Magazine, Summer 2021 issue, page 22. You can read it in the archives, if you have trouble the platform ISSUU, let me know.

Calico Cat Mysteries Cover Illustrations books 1, 2 and 3
Certificate of Excellence
MUSE™ Medallion

Klepto Cat Mysteries Cover Illustrations books 48 through 53
Certificate of Excellence

Waiting on Christmas Night
Certificate of Excellence

Waiting on Christmas Night, pastel, 10″ x 12″, 2021© Bernadette E. Kazmarski
Waiting on Christmas Night, pastel, 10″ x 12″, 2021© Bernadette E. Kazmarski

Draw Me Like One of Your French Cats and Bath, Interrupted
Certificate of Excellence
MUSE™ Medallion
The girls each won their own Certificate of Excellence, but had to share a Muse Medallion!

Draw Me Like One of Your French Cats

painting of tortoiseshell cat on flowered blanket
Draw Me Like One of Your French Cats, watercolor and pastel pencil, 8 x 10 © Bernadette E. Kazmarski

Bath, Interrupted

pastel painting of cat on quilt on bed
“Bath, Interrupted”, pastel, 13″ x 10″ © Bernadette E. Kazmarski

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All images and text used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission, although links to your site are more than welcome and are shared. Please ask if you are interested in using and image or story in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of an image or a product including it, check my animal and nature website Portraits of Animals to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.

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© 2022 | | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski

Weekly schedule of features:

Sunday: Essays, Pet Loss, Poetry, The Artist’s Life

Monday: Adoptable Cats, TNR & Shelters

Tuesday: Rescue Stories

Wednesday: Commissioned Portrait or Featured Artwork

Thursday: New Merchandise

Friday: Book Review, Health and Welfare, Advocacy

Saturday: Your Backyard Wildlife Habitat, Living Green With Pets, Creating With Cats

And sometimes, I just throw my hands in the air and have fun!




From health and welfare to rescue and adoption stories, advocacy and art, factual articles and fictional stories, "The Creative Cat" offers both visual and verbal education and entertainment about cats for people who love cats, pets and animals of all species.

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