When building worlds, particularly with those that have a rich and deep history, it is useful to create a timeline or timelines of important dates and events. This will help you keep any stories you populate your world with organized and neat. This become especially important for story creators that may wish to leap around from one time period to another. Some worlds may have alternate timelines.
Start with major events that you know the approximate timescales for. For example, if you know an event occurs 500 years before another, place those on your fledgling timeline and begin building it outwards from there. Your timeline does not need to begin at the dawn of recorded time, or the birth of your star, or the cosmic beginning of all things (unless that’s important to your world), it just needs to cover the time period that is special to you and your world. You can always go back later to fill in the past, or carry your world into its’ future.
It is not necessary to have ALL events on a single timeline. In fact that may become hectic if many important events are occurring in rapid succession. Just make a separate timeline that you can reference for that specific period.
Here are some useful timescales to be aware of when generating a timeline:
|Time in Perspective|
|Average Human Lifespan: 79 Years|
|Time between the first flight and the moon landing: 66 years|
|Time dinosaurs inhabited earth: 179 million years|
|Length of Ottoman Empire: 600 years|
|Time between the start of the Roman Empire and the building of the pyramids: ~2500 years|
|Time between the start of the Roman Empire and the present: ~2000 years|