Writers, like all creative types, appreciate reassurance that what they are doing resonates with others. (Who doesn’t?”
At the same time, most writers prefer doing their own thing regardless of whether other people like it or not. (Again, who doesn’t?)
I suspect that the difference between the two motivations is in percentage, not in absolutes.
In other words, some writers find their need for reassurance to be huge while their need for doing their own thing is of lessor importance. Other writers may only feel good writing what they wish and only afterwards hoping vaguely that a few people out there like it.
Because, at the end of the day, writers are people.