Shelby Criswell, “Queer As All Get Out: 10 People Who’ve Inspired Me” (Street Noise Books, 2021)

On this episode of Queer Voices of the South, I talk with Shelby Criswell, whose book Queer As All Get Out: 10 People Who've Inspired Me (Street Noise Books, 2021) follows the daily life of one queer artist from Texas as they introduce us to the lives of ten extraordinary people.

The author shares their life as a genderqueer person, living in the American South, revealing their own personal struggle for acceptance and how they were inspired by these historical LGBTQIA+ people to live their own truth. Featuring biographies of Mary Jones, We'wha, Magnus Hirschfeld, Dr. Pauli Murray, Wilmer "Little Axe" M. Broadnax, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Carlett Brown, Nancy Cardenas, Ifti Nasim, and Simon Nkoli.

Shelby Criswell is a queer comic creator and graphic designer thriving in San Antonio, TX. They studied studio arts at the Santa Fe Institute of Art and Design as well as illustration at Academy of Arts University. They have been creating comics and drawing since childhood and haven't found anything more fulfilling to take its place. When Shelby is not creating comics or working on graphic design projects for clients, they are playing banjo, going on overnight bike trips, or drinking far too much coffee.

Shelby has had work in a few comic anthologies including Sweaty Palms, Everything is Going Wrong, and is in the Ignatz and Ringo Award-winning book Be Gay Do Comics. Shelby made their debut into mainstream comics as the artist on TERMINAL PUNKS published by Mad Cave Studios. They have also illustrated online comics for Oh Joy Sex Toy and The Nib.

Morris Ardoin is author of Stone Motel: Memoirs of a Cajan Boy (2020, University Press of Mississippi), which was optioned for TV/Film development in 2021. A communications practitioner, his work has appeared in regional, national, and international media. He divides his time between New York City and Cornwallville, New York, where he does most of his writing. His blog, Parenthetically Speaking, can be found at www.morrisardoin.com. Twitter: @morrisardoin

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