Born in Winnipeg in 1957, Aaron Bushkowsky arrived in B.C. in 1988. He explores the relationship of a married couple to their prairie farm and one another in 'ed and mabel go to the moon' (1994), his first collection of poetry which was nominated for the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize in 1995. It was followed by Mars is for Poems (Oolichan) and The Vanishing Man (Cormorant, 2005), a linked collection of short stories that concerns men who undergo divorces, family death, failures and therapy in order to come to term with themselves and 'see love again'.

In Bushkowsky's Curtains for Roy (Cormorant $21) Alex is a playwright suffering from writer's block and harsh reviews. His best friend, Roy, is a theatre director with lung cancer and six months left to live. In pursuit of fresh air and great wine, they go on a road trip to the Okanagan Valley, where Roy rediscovers his passion for theatre. But when he decides to stage a production of A Midsummer Night's Dream at a winery, disaster ensues: the woman cast in the lead is the winery owner's wife and has no talent; wildfires encroach upon the surrounding forest; and Roy slips closer to death, one cigarette at a time. Curtains for Roy is billed as a hilarious and poignant peek into the world of theatre, where the greatest drama is offstage and the best performances take place behind the curtain. 9781897151747

As a playwright, Bushkowsky has twice won Jessie Awards in Vancouver for Outstanding Original Play; for The Waterhead and Strangers Among Us. The Waterhead was released as a book by Playwrights Canada Press. His play One Last Kiss premiered at the Belfry and Vancouver Playhouse Theatres in 2004.

Bushkowsky's quirky romance My Chernobyl (Playwrights Canada $16.95) won the 2008 Victoria Critics' Spotlight award for Best Professional Production and Best New Play. When a naive Canadian travels to Belarus, in order to give an inheritance to his father's last remaining relative, he meets his long-lost cousin, a beautiful, young Russian woman who views the Canadian as a ticket out of the radiation-blasted country. Cultures and ideals clash with touching and hilarious results. 978-0-88754-859-8

He has taught playwrighting and script writing at Langara College, Studio 58, Playwrights Theatre Centre and Vancouver Film Centre.

[BCBW 2014] "Poetry" "Theatre"