My suspicion is that the romance publishers are balking on the age of my protagonist. Sex sells and I imagine this is doubly true in romance. Matty and Iris are 18 at the end of the story, but the timeline runs two years. So...it's arguable that they looked at it as a young adult story, which their sites state they don't publish.
So, we'll chalk that up as 'my bad' and move along. In my own defense, I didn't sit down to write a young adult novel. I didn't sit down to write a romance either. But...that's what January Black wanted to be and who am I to argue?
I said I had a new strategy. It's not really impressive...I'm going to take the rejections thus far as a hint, and submit it to a few young adult agents. I've submitted to two this week and I should know in the next 6-8 weeks if I've taken a step forward or not.
Gossamer...I've spent a good bit of time looking at the Shoshoni language this week. Wow, it's complicated. But, one of my scene locations is in the Wind River Canyon in Wyoming. The natives there would have spoken Shoshoni and in my alternate timeline, the Shoshone (and Cheyenne, Sioux, and Arapaho) comprise a significant percentage of the local population.
Let me just say...building a whole new world is a feat, but building a different version of our world is a whole lot harder. But I'm having fun and that's the important part, right?