01/17/2012 01:12 pm ET Updated Mar 18, 2012

Taylor Swift In Vogue, Talking Career Fears

She's sold over 20 million albums and 40 million digital tracks by the age of 22, but Taylor Swift isn't dwelling on her success. In fact, she's afraid that it could all go away rather quickly.

"Even though I am at a place where my dresses are really pretty and the red carpets have a lot of bright lights and I get to play to thousands of people . . . you have to take that with a grain of salt," Swift tells Vogue in their new cover story. "The stakes are really high if you mess up, if you slack off and don't make a good record, if you make mistakes based on the idea that you are larger than life and you can just coast."

It's an ironic twist for an artist whose biggest album is called "Fearless," but it keeps her working hard. Swift's most recent album, "Speak Now," has gone 3x platinum in America, selling over five million discs worldwide. She's got five Grammy awards and 7 CMAs, but as she continued to explain -- and as she said this past August in an interview with a New Zealand outlet -- she knows that it could all go away very quickly if she doesn't make the right decisions. Luckily, her next album sounds like it will have the same elements of the three that have made her a superstar.

"There's just been this earth-shattering, not recent, but absolute crash-and-burn heartbreak," she says, "nd that will turn out to be what the next album is about. The only way that I can feel better about myself -- pull myself out of that awful pain of losing someone -- is writing songs about it to get some sort of clarity."

One direction Swift looks to be taking is acting. After starring in a small role in "Valentine's Day" in 2009, she will loan her voice to the upcoming animated film "The Lorax," and then star in the star-studded big screen adaptation of "Les Miserables."

For more from Swift, including talk about her childhood trouble with bullies and her fashion aspirations, click over to Vogue.