Who Should We Think About?

I've always told myself that when I'm writing, I should only think about me and what story I want to tell. What feels right to me. But I recently came across a blog that stated no, we should be thinking about our readers. What they want to see, what they would like. Well, now I had some thinking to do. Is there any compromise here? Can it be a mixture of both?

I think it's different for everyone. I know that, for me, if I write for anyone else, I'm not happy. And it shows in my writing. If I try to put myself in the audiences' shoes, I get stressed out and everything just falls apart. Maybe that's not a great characteristic for a writer to have, considering my dream is to one day have an audience read my work. But it's the truth. Maybe I need to work on that. Maybe not. I guess I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.

It also occured to me that maybe this whole debate is divided into two groups, the published and the unpublished. The unpublished can write for themselves, but if an author is in the middle of a series, he or she does need to please an audience to an extent. Take Richelle Mead and her Vampire Academy series. She had to finish it, right? So that was out of her control. But what was in her control - I hope - was where the story went. And I'd like to think she wrote what she felt was right for the story.

So, my conclusion? Yes, there is compromise here. We need to write for ourselves and for the rest of the world. I know. I really figured things out, huh?