César Ruiz Aquino is a Filipino poet and fictionist. He was born and raised in Zamboanga City, Philippines. He was educated at the Ateneo de Manila University, University of the Philippines and Silliman University. He began his writing career when Philippine Graphic published his story Noon and Summer in 1961. At age 19, he received a writing fellowship to attend the 1st Silliman University National Writers Workshop in 1962. He studied creative writing under Edilberto Tiempo, Edith Tiempo, Francisco Arcellana and Nick Joaquin.
Ruiz Aquino has mentored many students, teachers, artists and writers at Ateneo de Zamboanga, the University of the Philippines in Baguio City, Maryknoll College, Lyceum of the Philippines University, Foundation University and Silliman University. He earned his Ph.D at Silliman University in Dumaguete City, where he has been teaching creative writing and literature since 1981. He is also a regular lecturer-panel member at the Annual Silliman University National Writers Workshop.
Ruiz Aquino has received Carlos Palanca Memorial Awards for poetry (1978, 1997) and short fiction (1979, 1989). He has also received a Gawad Pambansang Alagad ni Balagtas for Lifetime Achievement from the Unyon ng mga Manunulat ng Pilipinas (Writers' Union of the Philippines or UMPIL) in 1997. He was also named National Fellow for Poetry by the University of the Philippines Institute of Creative Writing (U.P. ICW) in 2003.
Ruiz Aquino publications include Chronicles of Suspicion (short stories, Kalikasan Press, 1988), Word Without End (poems, Anvil Publishing,1993) and Checkmeta: The Cesar Ruiz Aquino Reader (poems and stories, Midtown Printing Company, 2004). He is currently working on Mr. Mxyzptlk Pops Into the Room, a novel.