Meliza Bañales aka Missy Fuego is an author, curator, performer, advocate, & cultural critic. She is the author of three books and was a Lambda Literary Finalist in 2016 for LGBT Debut Fiction. She was on three national poetry slam teams as well as grand slam champion in 2002 and a Legend of Slam in 2014. Her short films have been official selections at Frameline, Outfest, Cherie! Cherie! Paris LGBT Film Festival, and she won the Jury Award at the LA Transgender Film Festival in 2011. She has served as a Lecturer in Literature at UC San Diego since 2015 and is writing a fourth book, a manifesto of survivorship.