Writing a Novel

November always makes me feel like a failure. Not only am I incapable of, and not terribly well disposed towards, growing a moustache to make it a charitable #Movember, but then #NANOWRIMO pokes up its clever, superior little head and makes me feel bad about my attempts to write as well.
It makes me feel slightly uneasy, that in 2016 I can still find myself pondering the issue of balancing writing with motherhood - perhaps I should discuss writing and parenthood, as I'm sure there are many father's out there doing a similar juggling act. However, that is not my reality, so I'm going to address the issues I have encountered during the writing and publication of my first novel, Russian Redemption.
I used to wonder if I would ever have a life. In fact I wondered this every day for the five long, lonely years that I lived in a domestic abusive relationship. In the end I didn't care because I was so numb, but here I am now and I want to share with you a snippet of my story.
If you've written a book, chances are you have at least considered self-publishing. There are many excellent reasons to self-publish, even if you have the chance to publish traditionally. Where self-publishing was once seen as the last recourse of the desperate, it has fast become valid method of publishing.
True young adult fiction is intended, as the name implies, to be read both by adults and those in their late teens. I do not make allowances for my young readers in my writing, and neither do most authors. The storylines are definitely not childish.
I'm currently working on a new novel that will be published by Headline next year. Keen to understand what awaits me, I tapped James Law and Jenny Blackhurst, two very talented, recently published first time thriller writers, for advice.
It takes a lot to lay your heart out on a platter, hopelessly preparing yourself for the vultures to attack. To put yourself in the firing line and risk losing your passion forever. To wait for that lethal knock to your confidence, the bruising of your ego.
As feverish NaNoWriMo writers across the globe step back from their overheated keyboards - some with 50,000 words in the bag and others with rather less - how do they keep writing come December when there's no deadline to hit?
From November 1- 30th, we have been celebrating Novel Writing Month which has seen many budding authors pen their first novel. Workshops have taken place across the UK designed to help authors find their potential.
Writers are frequently told that they should work every day in order to build and maintain the requisite muscles. Great advice, but what exactly should we be writing? To be specific, if you are committed to the art of fiction, does writing non-fiction 'count'?