Dan Harmon’s 8-Step Story Circle

In this video, Dan Harmon explains how he builds the stories for Rick and Morty episodes:

  1. Start with a relatable character;
  2. Give the character a need/wish;
  3. Going after that need/wish takes the character across a threshold (where the story changes direction);
  4. The characters have to go through a road of trials, searching for something;
  5. They find it, whether they like it or not;
  6. It kicks their ass;
  7. They return to their starting point;
  8. (having gone through some change)