Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Pen?

I am. *raises hand*

I've been writing stories since I was eight years old. I still have diaries full of fantastic tales of mystery and adventure. When I was a teenager, I would spend nights writing short stories of characters that each held a piece of me some way. I would write them, and then reread them for pleasure over and over again. As much as I enjoy others getting entertainment from my work, I ultimately write because I'm looking for a good story to read.

Why am I afraid? 

Because I'm now bound by rules and expectations (or so I feel). I now have to worry about beta readers and editors and marketing. I now need to understand story acts and arches. I now outline instead of just letting the words flow from my fingertips. The process has turned technical in the name of being a better writer. It feels like 10% imagination and 90% everything else. But is it working?

I've always been in the camp that the only way to be a great writer is to keep writing. All the technical books in the world can not help if you do not practice. This goes for writing, painting or playing an instrument. Like Nike reminds us, you have to just do it.

I think what my fear is telling me is that I'm allowing myself to get caught up in the wrong thing. Instead of focusing solely on the final, polished result, I should be enjoying the process of telling a story and introducing characters. I should be finding pleasure in the act of writing.

What about you? Do you have moments of fear while writing? What is your fear telling you?