HSW #12. The 7 Anchor Scenes

In this episode of the How Story Works podcast, Lani explains the 7 Anchor Scenes, along with examples.


  • This gave me the perfect excuse to rematch Guardians of the Galaxy. :)

  • Lani-
    I am writing a TV pilot. Do the 7 anchor scenes work then? Do you have a minor set of anchor scenes for the single episode while maintaining a larger 7 anchor scenes for the season and only the inciting incident of the larger arc would be in the pilot?
  • Thank you. This just helped me continue my story. :-)
  • Anjali - this is a sample structure that works well for movies and books. TV episodes are different, depending on whether it's a traditional broadcast station (with commercial breaks) which will fall into acts around the commercials. A TV episode for a subscription show will have much more freedom with the structure. I'll be talking about other types of structures in a future episode, but this is just a sample to get you guys comfortable with the basics of how one type of structure works. I think 7 anchor scenes for an hour-long TV show might be a bit much, although you could make it work. It just might feel weird and rushed.

  • Thanks Lani! I have seen, and was basing my script on, a five act structure, so your comment make sense. I am loving this podcast and am looking forward to more!

  • It gives me inspiration. :D

  • Lani - I thoroughly enjoyed this series and anxiously await its return. As a romance writer, I deal with both an external (real world) conflict and an internal (romantic) conflict. I think I have it figured out but would you briefly speak to how you see the structuring of two parallel 7 scene tracks within the same work? Thanks in advance

  • I cant seem to find the anchor scenes worksheet, can anyone advise?

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