The mayor of London, Boris Johnson, chilling in Diagon Alley.
J.K. Rowling’s Plot Spreadsheet for ‘Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix’
She divides the columns by chapter number, story timeline, chapter title, main plots and subplots.
“If you blow that image up and look at it, it’s fascinating. Rowling outlines each chapter in detail including which month of the school year it takes place in, the title and the plot. All of that seems standard. But it’s the next few columns where things get really good.
She keeps track of all the book’s subplots in every chapter and how they are developing in the real world of the book, even if they aren’t mentioned on the page. So, there’s a full column on “The Prophecy” which is the main subplot Harry is worried about throughout the book. Then there’s a column for the romantic subplot, titled “Cho/Ginny” followed by “D.A.” which follows what’s going on with Harry, Ron and Hermione’s resistance group “Dumbledore’s Army,” one called “O of P,” a column about what’s the latest with the “Order of the Phoenix,” a.k.a, the people who believe Voldemort is still alive, then separate columns for Snape (and others, I can’t read Rowlings writing) and the Hagrid and Grawp story.
If you think about Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, that’s it. Those columns pretty much encompass the whole story. Frankly, I’m surprised there isn’t a column for Dolores Umbridge but this surely isn’t the full extent of Rowling’s outlining. Really, it’s just a small window into her genius.”
“It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all - in which case, you fail by default.”
― J.K. Rowling