Mike Duran has just published a link to a list of the Best Blogs for Writers in 2012. While he acknowledges that this is useful, he also makes an interesting point:
Writing blogs potentially insulate writers from their real audience: Readers.
Now, I'm a reader, a reviewer and an editor, not a writer. I find the writing blogs useful for giving background information on the publishing industry, and for their debates into current issues like self-publishing. If you want to find out how to submit your work for publication, one or more of these blogs will tell you how (and Rachelle Gardner will give you the Christian perspective).
But Mike makes a good point: as writers, you need to be able to connect with your readers, your audience, your target market. You need to understand what readers want to read, what we like and dislike. Personally, I am over Amish romance novels with teenage heroines, but people continue to write them and publishers continue to publish them, so that might be just me.
However, I've just picked up an Amish mystery novel, featuring three Amish mothers. It's good, partly because it is a bit different. That is important to me. I don't want to read the same novel I've already read a dozen times before, only with different people in a different place in a different time. I want something new, something original, a story I haven't read before.
So, writers, there is your challenge. To write something new - and, as a Christian writer, to write the story God has given you.