Couples in their 30s are having trouble having kids. And you just kind of extrapolate that and say, 'What if it happened to everybody? What kind of society would it be like if all of a sudden we knew that this was the end of the line - we couldn't have kids?'
In America right now, we use words like 'smart' to talk about bombs. American rhetoric is grounded in ideas of capital-G Good, capital-E Evil, and it's very clear who is on which side. But in a book you can do just the opposite. You can use all lower-case words.
There's a rule of writing: if everything is funny, nothing is funny; if everything is sad, nothing is sad. You want that contrast.
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