[Just before doing a personal-narrative style journal entry]
8th Grader: Can I embellish the story?
Mr. White: You can tell it creatively, for example by making it sound overdramatic, but you can’t change events. It has to be 100% true.
8th Grader: So, I could say “the firecracker exploded in my hands,” but not “the firecracker blew off my hands.”
Mr. White: Correct.
8th Grader: You’re limiting my material.
Mr. White: Henry David Thoreau said “it’s vain to sit down and write when you have not stood up to live.” You’re limiting your own material.
8th Grader: But you can’t skydive until you’re 18, I’ve looked into it!