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Week 4 | Due Sunday, April 3rd

Your job for this week is to create a first outline of your story using the Story Spine.


facilitator guide / worksheet

Kickoff Video

Week 4 Deliverable: Story Spine (1 hour)

Once you come up with a story that your team likes, draw a simple visual for each step in the Story Spine, and turn it into a short video.

Don't worry if your drawings are rough, you'll be redrawing these frames later. The goal of this week is to write down your story points so others can react to it. It’s more important to get a solid outline rather than worrying about sketching

Past Week 4 Submissions

Each team should upload one Week 4 deliverable below.

Only one individual from each team needs to do this upload.

These exercises are designed to help you create a first draft of your Story Spine.

Remember, your story does not have to be set in stone yet! 
You will have the next three weeks to develop it further.

Also, focus on writing your story points this week not on drawings.

Now it’s time to create your Week 4 Deliverable.

Focus on your story points this week, not your drawings. 

Each team should create & upload one submission.

Exercise 1: Theme (20min)

Part A: Identify the theme of three of your favorite stories.

Part B: Brainstorm ideas for the moral of your own story. For ideas, return to the needs of your main character(s) from Week 2.

Your host for Week 8: Connie He! Join the final livestream on Monday, April 25th @ 5pm PT/8pm ET

Connie He is currently a story artist on an upcoming film at Pixar Animation Studios. She was born and raised in Shanghai, China. She graduated from Ringling College of Art and Design in 2018, where she learned storytelling and CG animation. Her graduation film Watermelon: A Cautionary Tale has won 33 international film awards. Her animation career began as a CG artist on Netflix's series Love, Death & Robot. After that, she focused on pursuing storyboarding, which led to feature film development at Taiko Animation Studios. She joined Pixar in 2021 and is now working on a new Pixar film coming out in 2024.

We are now in the final buffer week.
Please submit your work at the bottom of the Week 8 page to be included in the Exhibition page which will go live on Friday, May 13th at 6pm PT. It's okay to submit partially finished work, that's what our program is all about. You must upload something by May 13th in order to earn your certificate & dedicated exhibition page.
Our awards & celebration livestream will happen via YouTube on Friday at 5pm PT. Here is the link to where it will happen.
The public exhibition page will go live after the livestream with ALL participants work: (you can share this link with friends, families etc.)
Incredible work!!!
Certificate Download

Full Livestream (1 hour)

Livestream Highlights (27 min)

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The submission will appear in the weekly gallery after it has been moderated.

You can view and edit your submission here after it has rendered:

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Exercise 3: Act 2 (30min)

Next, develop the information you want to present in Act 2 of your own story. Consider the following:

  • What is the goal of your main character(s) at the start of Act 2?

  • Does your character reach a low point? If so, why?

  • When and how does your character learn something new or realize their needs?

Try summarizing each step of Act 2 in a sentence:

4. Because of that...

5. Because of that...

6. Because of that...

Exercise 2: Act 1 (30min)

Think about the things you want to present in Act 1 of your own story: consider who, what, where, and when.

Remember that the primary focus of Act 1 is to establish setting, character, and inciting incident.

Try summarizing each step of Act 1 in a sentence:

1. Once upon a time...

2. Every day...

3. Until one day...

Exercise 4: Act 3 (30min)

Now, develop the information you want to present in Act 3 of your own story. Here are some questions to think about:​

  • What is the crisis? This will appear in your "Until finally..." section.

  • How will it be resolved?

  • How will the main character demonstrate that they've changed? This will appear in your "And ever since then..." section.

  • What is the moral of your story?

Try summarizing each step of Act 3 in a sentence:

7. Until finally...

8. And ever since then...

The moral of the story is...

Exercise 5: Advice

Here is some advice on story structure from:

- James Robertson

- Mary Coleman

- Kevin O'Brien

- Robert Grahamiones

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