Free to read
This is a vexed question from my view point as a once award-winning, and best-selling writer of speculative fiction.
On the one hand, people who have read my work come to expect a standard of writing from me, but on the contrary, I question why I should maintain my high quality when my book sales keep falling, and fewer people read what I write.
Some people would say that if I let my quality drop, the readers will fall too; to this, my reply is that if the readers didn't fall off, I would have maintained a quality of writing.
Other friends tell me what do I think about as my quality falls?
Do I feel saddened?
The answer is NO!
When you spend over a year writing a book that ends up in the trash pile because nobody wanted to buy it, you have passed the point of caring what standard you write.
I know I am better than some writers I know of, I have proved it in contests, but they have a huge advantage over me; they have the money to promote their work.