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First of all, welcome to my first newsletter of the new year. May you all have a prosperous, healthy and amazing 2020.

With the beginning of the new year, it is also time for changes, starting with a brand-new logo and website. My blog content would also change next year with the deletion of The Travelling Mug blog. I needed to simplify my life, and this was the first step.

It is scary to think we are in a brand new year and decade already. It feels like last week when I set out my plans and goals for 2019. Now, at the beginning of 2020, I am doing the same.

Before I could do that, I had to reflect on my achievements and failures of 2019. Had I reached my goals I set in 2018? The answer is an emphatic No! By September I realized it would not happen. I felt disappointed, and not sure whether I wanted to continue this journey. I worked hard, too hard in fact, to achieve those goals and felt burnt out. 

I needed to slow down and step away and find again the reasons I am writing. I had to realize that I am not a creative machine. I am just human. I had to accept that l am not just a writer. I am also a wife, a mother, a sister, a friend and a cousin. I have other interests other than writing. I love photography and I love travelling and I love painting but I have neglected these interests for the sake of writing. I missed it.

It had been liberating and I am now glad that I made changes in my life. After talking to my mentor, two writing friends and family, I stopped publishing for the year. I packed up the house and started travelling, taking a gazillion photographs and seeing beautiful places and meeting wonderful people. I caught up with family, some I haven't seen in years. 

Since then, I enjoy writing again and enjoy the process as I've done in the beginning. 

What's happening in 2020?

2020 will be another year of changes and adjustments as if 2019 hadn't been full of those!

In January I'm embarking on another six-week trip, this time to Malaysia where I hope to finish my next two projects. These projects are miles away from my romance books. It is two photography projects I hope to publish as coffee-table books. 

After that I will hide in a small village in the Eastern Cape, selecting the photographs and the formatting of these two books. I will also edit several other projects.

From there I will move to the Southern Cape for three months. Instead of taking longer overseas trips, I will take micro-trips to the Karoo and the Western Cape for a series of articles.

While there, I also hope to get involved in a charity project to make the beaches more accessible to people in wheelchairs. It is a big project which will involve a series of humanistic articles which might be combined in book-form of which the proceeds will go to the charity to buy more specialized wheelchairs.

I've postponed my trip to Australia until September/October to work on these projects. 


Scottish Billionaire Series

I've finished the first draft of the first novel in the Scottish billionaire series in November. It doesn't even have a name yet! This series will be stand-alone novels, and as with my other series, might be clean. Or not. It all depends on the characters. This first book involves two characters in their forties, Alessandro is an Italian Scot and a property tycoon. Julia is his new accounts manager and a formidable businesswoman in her own right. 

My Secret Life with Unicorns

I'm busy with the final edit of this standalone romance. I might not self-publish it so it might not be out next year. 

Until You're Mine

As with My Secret Life with Unicorns, I will not self-publish this romantic suspense. I set both these books in Scotland. Until You're Mine is the first in a trilogy set in the Highlands.

Playing for Glory Series

I've finished the next two books in the series which is Blood Brothers (Mark and Jaylin) and Wrecking Ball (Richie and Sarah). I've also finished two novellas which are Knock-On (Luke and Lisbeth) and Concussion (Ryan and Margaret). The third is a short story, Choices, a short story which will form part of the Romance Organization of South Africa's sweet anthology to be released in September 2020.

The other projects I mentioned in 2019 is still in the pipeline. I've finished the first drafts of most of them. I just need to decide what to do with them.


I haven't set my travel plans nor my writing plans in stone this year. My aim is to finish twelve projects. They won't all be novels. Some may be travel articles, others photo books and who knows what else comes my way.

In 2020 I aim to go with the flow, taking things as they come. I know already that opportunities and changes will be plenty.

And, if you've set any goals for yourself, remember that they are only goals. Even if you only reach one, it is one more than you had reached in 2019. What is the saying? Remember, life happens when you make other plans. Be prepared for the changes.

Currently, most of my books are only available on Amazon as I've enrolled them in Kindle Unlimited for a limited period. The link to my books is

For those of you who received the books for free on Prolific Works or Booksprout, will you please leave me a review if you enjoyed the book? If you have any other feedback, please email me at I appreciate any comments, whether they are negative or positive.


Again, thank you for your support and best of luck for the new year.



Francine Beaton

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