Okay, so while I’m waiting for my darling book to be published, I’m writing away on another project (I have several, which may be the topic of another blog post at some point). Today, I came to a specific point in the plot that required me to put down an injured sheep at a location far away from vets, slaughterhouses and civilization in general.
I’ve been in close contact with sheep quite often, and has stumbled upon dead ones twice in my life, but I’m a city girl and see no reason to pretend I’m anything but a blank canvas when it comes to putting sick animals down. So, in order to be convincing about how this particular ‘plot sheep’ was killed, I had to do some research. Now, a few hours later, I know how to go about this in a humane way thanks to a very informative brochure on the matter (courtesy of experts in the Norwegian sheep and goats breeding association), though I think I can safely say that I am highly unlikely to ever be able to utilize the kind of precision and guts it takes to go through with it. Thankfully, I have fictional characters at my disposal who are capable.
It made for an interesting and odd day, researching this topic and figuring out how to go about describing it in writing and actually integrating it into the story. (And no, I have no intention of telling you what the novel is about. It may never come to anything. But sheep are not major characters, I assure you. No real sheep came to harm during my writing either.)
Oh, and afterwards I had to study skinning sheep carcasses, too. Don’t want that sheepskin to go to waste, of course!