Lectures and Workshop Lectures and Workshop

Story design: the seven pillars that prop up the structure

When conceiving a story idea, there is one of the most easily overlooked but also important links-the various design works required before writing. Whether in fiction, animation, film, comics, or even game creation, the logic of the story is an indispensable part, and there are many "Common ground" in creative design.

Peter Gamble Robinson, a screenwriter professor at the USC Film School who once taught at ShanghaiTech University, divides the story creation into four main threads: character, plot, theme and relationship. But for different writers and different types of stories, there are still many side links that need to be "opened up": For example, science fiction/fantasy stories need to consider the world outlook, clues, hints and so on.

He was the first Chinese bilingual author to receive the first Earthling Award in 2018, founded by Game of Thrones author George Martin, and has a deep understanding of cross-media storytelling. He believes that the plot is the most critical factor in the composition of the story that affects the rhythm of the story. We have all heard of the classic three-act play structure. In the core framework of the three-act play, Zhuoxuan Yu believes that there are seven elements that play a pillar role in the plot. In the logic of story design in any medium-whether it is a novel, an animation, or a film and television script-these seven pillars are the most basic "Common ground". Use it as a weapon of thinking, no matter what medium it is applied to.

In this lecture, Mr. Zhuoxuan Yu will share with us his experience in using these seven pillars in different media creations, the interaction between the seven pillars and characters, and how to make this set of creative logic and science fiction/fantasy story worldview The architecture complements each other.


May 24, 2021



School Creative and Art



Zhuoxuan Yu is a writer/screenwriter, whose creative field spans literature, animation, film and television and games. In 2018, he won the first "Earthman Award" founded by the author of "Game of Thrones" George Martin. He is also the official contracted bilingual writer of the world's largest e-sports game "League of Legends". His published works span fantasy, science fiction literature and non-literary literature. The novel has won the Silver Award at the Kadokawa Light Novel Award, the Taiwan Fantasy Literature Award, and has also been shortlisted for the Ni Kuang Science Fiction Award. Created the space opera series "Guangyuan" with three science fiction writers and art concept team, and served as the story producer. Coming out in 2021 is the trilogy of future fantasy "White Rin Century". The non-literary business book "Platform Strategy" sold more than 220,000 copies in China.      


In the field of animation, its original worldview comic "Split Earth Saga" was successfully launched on KICKSTARTER, the world's most popular fundraising platform, and had been published in Chinese in 2020. In the past two years, he has served as a worldview architect and script doctor for many comics and animations. In the field of games, he has developed in-depth cooperation with Tencent Games to design a world view for quality games. He also served as the screenwriter of the mobile game Storm of Darkness, which won the national Google Play action leaderboard for a week. In the field of film and television, he signed a contract with the trans-China-US creative agency CAA in 2019, and currently serves as a film and television development consultant project and a pre-development screenwriter. He also served as Cixin Liu's accompanying translator for the London Literary Season. Served as a content development consultant for "Three-Body Derivative Universe" for six months. Non-literary articles were published in well-known magazines such as "Science Fiction World", "Harvard Business Review", "Reader", "Southern People Weekly" and other well-known magazines.

Zhuoxuan Yu holds an MBA from CEIBS and a Bachelor of sociology from the University of British Columbia.

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