Note that you don’t want to touch coral if you can help it, because you can easily kill it. However, there are a lot of currents in the Maldives, especially when the depth changes abruptly from shallow to deep. So – to avoid floating away – I swam to the edge and held gently on to a piece of coral with my thumb and fingertip. Trouble is, I held on to a surprisingly sharp bit, and cut my finger on it. Either that, or an unseen creature was living under the bit of coral I held, and it nipped me.
So my finger was bleeding. The blood looked green because we were quite deep and the red spectrum of light is the first to disappear underwater.
I was so interested that I kept squeezing my finger to watch the green droplets and pretend I was a Vulcan*.
It was fascinating, but eventually I thought: “Hang on a minute – sharks! They are supposed to scent one drop of blood from miles away!”
Happily, sharks are interested in fish blood not human blood, and there were none to be seen. I did the rest of the dive pinching the wound together, just in case.
Why you need to know this
Because story-telling is a useful copywriting tool. Witness the rise and rise of celebrity gossip magazines. People can’t help but read human-interest stories.
Almost every page on my new site starts with a story. You can do that too. For example, write case studies in in a story-telling format – start with the problem (what was the situation before you got involved), then describe the solution (what did you do) and end with the results you achieved (what changed as a result of your intervention).
You can also tap into the story-telling trend to write compelling headlines.
As you may know, I send out a monthly email tipsheet. Usually, I follow my own guidelines and write a subject line that includes the word ‘you’ instead of ‘I’, ‘us’ or ‘we’. The latest issue broke my own rules and yet achieved a much higher open rate than usual. In case you’re wondering, the subject line was “I’m so embarrassed…”
*Obscure Star Trek reference