Mark at RPGKnights has posted about how to write an adventure, covering most of the major steps involved in a linear view of what most people would understand as the “adventure path” view of creating an adventure, where there is a strict progression of events that unfold as players unlock certain elements of the story towards the end of each chapter, and ultimately the end of the adventure. It doesn’t work quite so well for sandbox play, and does need heavily modified for adventures that don’t use a linear structure in events that unfold.
Business Insider recently posted an article about how different cultures in the world view time and how they use it, and when I create adventures (as opposed to scenarios), I try to take into consideration that as much as there may be events that unfold according to story timelines, there’s no way to know how or control how the players are going to react once they get into contact with the elements of the story (without the GM railroading them, and that’s just bad adventure design, IMO). It becomes important to build in a lot of flexibility in the design of an adventure so that things will happen whether or not the players interact as you hope they will or not. There’s a lot more I really want to say on the matter regarding adventure design, GM translation, and what is essentially “run time execution” of the adventure, but I think that’s probably better for a different long form post.