You might have seen the news a few weeks ago when a seventeen-year-old girl on her L-plates was fined for driving with her mother. The fine was later rescinded by the police.
Often students don’t know how to take a small idea and expand it into a story. Here are twenty ideas to expand this small story of a learner driver being fined during COVID-19.
1. Write from the viewpoint of the learner’s mother who recently had an argument with her daughter and really didn’t want to take her for a drive.
2. Imagine you are the learner’s younger sister, who wasn’t allowed to be on camera and was tired of being second fiddle. Think a modern-day Jan Brady.
3. Pretend the learner’s parents just had a huge argument, and the mother wanted to leave the house and took the first excuse she could think of – helping her learner daughter increase her driving hours.
4. Maybe there was a domestic violence situation in the house and the mother and learner driver had packed suitcases and were on their way to a holiday house when they were stopped by police.
5. Imagine the learner has a panic attack after the incident and never gets behind the wheel again.
6. Perhaps the learner had been terrified about driving and was grateful there were quiet roads to practise driving during COVID-19.
7. What if the learner boasts to her friends about her newsworthy appearance and her friends leave her out of social media groups because they’re tired of her boasting?
8. Pretend her grandmother sees her learner granddaughter on the news and thinks she had an accident or was pulled over for drugs.
9. What if the learner’s ex-boyfriend sees her on the news and realises he misses her and wants to get back together?
10. Imagine her mother sees the way their house was presented and is mortified and goes on a big cleaning and spending spree.
11. What if her older brother tells her off for the clothes she wore, saying she was presenting herself poorly in cheap, tight clothes?
12. Maybe she isn’t very eloquent on the news and looks awkward and gawky and is teased mercilessly about it.
13. Write from the viewpoint of the learner twenty years after the incident, because it has become the defining feature of her life.
14. Perhaps the learner is shy and introverted and doesn’t want to appear on the news at all but her parents insist on it.
15. What if the learner later takes her parent’s car out for a solo drive?
16. Imagine the fine wasn’t revoked and her parents make her pay it because she has a casual job.
17. What if she spends three hours on her hair, make-up and clothes before the news cameras turn up?
18. Pretend she is encouraged for being a social media influencer after the incident.
19. Imagine that the learner goes for a long walk at the same time as the news cameras arrive at her house.
20. Maybe the family’s house is presented impeccably and they emerge as spoilt rich people and the public think the learner should pay the fine.
Let’s embrace the small stories and be curious about the hidden stories. Let me know which scenario you would choose to write!