Have you been curious why Rome Entertainment Group chose to remain in Florida while we are suffering in our current political environment? If so read on to learn why supporting the communities here is more important than ever.
Re: A Statement from Rome Entertainment Group DBA Smut Lovers
Our goal at Smut Lovers: The Community has always been to create an inclusive educational environment for both readers and authors. In these current times of political uncertainty that has become more important than ever. Laws in the State of Florida have been rapidly changing and not in the direction that anyone here at Smut Lovers agrees with.
Holding our conference here in Florida is important to us for a few reasons. First, we have a huge Kink Community here and an even larger LGBTQIA+ community. In these times we know it is important to support these communities along with the countless others that have seen their rights limited in the last year. We have worked to provide a diverse group of presenters, attending authors, performers, and educators so that everyone who joins us has someone they can relate to. In addition to this we have created our virtual ticket option for those who do not feel safe traveling to our state at this time. Everyone has to do what feels best for them and that is a very individualized decision, but we wanted to offer those who do not feel safe traveling to Florida an opportunity to gain the education from afar.
We have received feedback from many attendees that have shared why it is important to them that Smut Lovers continues here in Florida, below are some of those statements:
“The legislature happening in Florida is frightening. It’s dehumanizing. I see the struggles of my trans and queer siblings there, and it hurts my heart. Policy in this country has very little to do with the will of the people, but it’s my hope that events like Smut Lovers will help dilute the rhetoric and show that sexuality isn’t something to be feared. More importantly, I don’t want the LGBTQIA+ communities of Florida to feel abandoned by their brethren as well as their elected officials. We stand together.”
Rowan Merrick, Signing Author at Smut Lovers: The Conference (Out of State Attendee)
“Over the years alternative communities have found a lot of strength in gathering together, whether it’s for activism or just plain fun. There are a lot of us proud smut lovers in Florida and we look forward to spending time with others for conversations both fun and serious, to share information and to party, and to simply gather together, share with each other, and enjoy our passions without shame! We’re excited to be part of Smut Lovers and can’t wait to share fun, knowledge, and smut with everyone!”
Darcy and Cecil, The Woodshed Orlando, Educators for Smut Lovers: The Conference (In State Attendees)
“I chose to attend Smut Lovers for the learning experience presented and the welcoming nature of the organizer. It’s important to me that LGBT+ voices are heard and represented in all spaces, something that is sometimes hard to find. My experience so far is that those voices are recognized and valued by the Smut Lovers community, giving me hope for a more inclusive future within the author world.”
A.N. Waugh, Signing Author at Smut Lovers: The Conference (Out of State Attendee)
“I know it almost seems rote to say, but visibility and representation are important. I’m still fairly new to being a published author – Smut Lovers is actually going to be the first conference I’m attending by myself! – but in the few years I’ve been doing this, I have met some great people and forged some wonderful friendships, none stronger than those with my fellow queer authors. I hope that by attending and sharing my stories with everyone, others will feel encouraged to pick up a pen and do the same. The world could always use more storytellers!”
Dominic N. Ashen, Signing Author at Smut Lovers: The Conference (In State Attendee)
“A world of full expression is a world of Beauty. And beauty is all about seeing and being seen. This is why I am excited and proud to attend, not just to be seen but more importantly to see and acknowledge others.”
Stella Boheme, Performer at Smut Lovers: The Conference (In State Attendee)
“As a racialized kinky and queer person, especially living in Florida where it can feel isolating and unsafe, it means the world to me to know Smut Lovers exists. It’s reminded me that we aren’t alone-whether we’re fighting or celebrating-and there are people who care.”
Ashley Michele, Signing Author and Assistant Director at Smut Lovers: The Conference (In State Attendee)
Smut Lovers the Community believes everyone deserves space to learn and be supported. These communities are still here in Florida, and many are fighting against what is happening. Even more do not have the ability to leave. Smut Lovers will continue to serve everyone who is in state as well as anyone who chooses to join us from out of state.
There is plenty of work being done by local and national non-profits to get legislative changes in place that will improve the way of life for everyone here in Florida. The Walt Disney World Corporation, The Human Rights Campaign, Come Out with Pride Orlando, and Hamburger Mary’s among other organizations are not standing down. This will take time, just as it will in many states that are facing similar issues.
Our frustrations rise every day just as many of yours do but our mission has not changed. SAFE, INCLUSIVE, EDUCATION for all humans. We are proud to serve, in any small way, the LGBTQIA+ and kink communities inside and outside of Florida.
We are always here to answer any questions we can. Feel free to email us at Info@SmutLovers.org.
Owner and Director
Rome Entertainment Group DBA Smut Lovers