Everyone is afraid of something. You can be the biggest, baddest, most outrageously muscle-bound guy or gal the world has ever seen, and there will still be something out there that scares your shorts off.
For me, it's cockroaches. Can't stand the things. I used to work in an office that where they jumped out in broad daylight and literally looked you in the eye. No matter what our pest control guys sprayed at them, they would not die. Ugh. Just thinking about it makes me queasy.
Anyway... Moving on.
My point is, fear is instinctive; it's built into the fibers of who we are as living creatures. Heck, animals have that whole fight-or-flight response down to a science. Just try sneaking up on a grizzly bear in the forest and see how Mr. Friendly reacts to being startled. (Okay, don't actually try that. I don't want to get sued.)
In the right context, fear is a perfectly healthy---and at times even life-saving---emotion. Fear is what prompts us to teach our children about "Stranger Danger," for example. However, if we give it too much control, it cripples us. It holds us hostage and crushes our dreams before they even have the chance to take flight. And that's what makes it so dangerous. Fear doesn't allow us the opportunity for failure or success. It only keeps us stuck where we are.
As a writer, fear is your greatest enemy. It can turn your Inner Editor from a soft and helpful whisper into a whiny, nagging scream, one that tells you every sentence, indeed, every single word you put down on paper is wrong, wrong, WRONG. It can keep you revising the same WIP for 15 years, yet at the same time convince you that it should never see the light of day. And if you let it, fear will ensure that you always remain an aspiring writer, never a published one.
You deserve better. Don't let your fears do that to you. Starting today, let's face them together.
It's sharing time now, boys and girls: What fears do you have about your writing?