“Vampire Diaries” actress Nina Dobrev might be gone, but the show must go on. Dobrev’s character, Elena Gilbert, was written off during the Season 6 finale. However, the hit CW series is still going strong. With a seventh season slated to premiere this fall, co-creators Julie Plec and Kevin Williamson revealed that fans need not worry about how the show will function without one of its main stars.

Plec and Williamson were on hand at the 2015 ATX Television Festival to talk about their careers during a panel called “A Conversation With Julie and Kevin.” The pair discussed everything from “Scream” to “Dawson’s Creek” … but attendees couldn’t help but grill them about the big changes hitting “The Vampire Diaries” this upcoming season.

“Here’s the deal. There are a lot of things going into it,” Plec told the audience. “One of the things we set out to do was tell a love story between two brothers and build up an ensemble around everybody.”

Plec explained that the goal for the ensemble – if they were lucky – was to create an interest in other characters and other relationships. And the show did just that with Caroline (Candica Accola), Alaric (Matt Davis), Bonnie (Kat Graham) on the others. When it was announced that Nina Dobrev would be exiting the series, they then faced with the question: “What would the show be like without Elena?”

“No offense to Nina, because she was extraordinary, but as writers you’re like, ‘I am so god---n sick of trying to manage this love triangle,” Plec joked. “I just want to, like, throw up.”

Williamson explained that they were forced to think about “what else” the show is about – like “embracing family, finding family and reconnecting with family.”

“This season the triangle of Elena may be off in the ether,” Williamson added. “But guess what, there is a lot of story to tell. A lot of great, emotional, tear jerking, epic, scary and thrilling story to tell … I think.”

But that’s not to say that there would have been no interesting story to tell if Dobrev decided to stay on “The Vampire Diaries.” Julie Plec revealed that when the actress made the decision to depart, the writers were already “talking creatively about what Season 7 would be.”

“As writers we were like, ‘oh, look what door this opens up,’” she continued. “Look what opportunity this opens up to build this character, or to really give juice to this friendship.”

Fans of “The Vampire Diaries” can see how it all plays out when the CW series returns for its seventh season in the fall. Will you be tuning in now that Nina Dobrev is gone? Tweet your thoughts to @AmandaTVScoop.