Region Rat

An Interview with Rich Laskowski

I was born in Chicago. I'm from Northwest Indiana. I live in Southwest Michigan.

I wrote a book called Regionrat. There's a movie based on it starring Connor Williams and Natasia Halabi. I have a small business in the trucking industry, a beautiful wife, five kids and I practice Taekwondo for fun.

When it comes to writing, I wouldn't say that I love it like it's a craft or a hobby. It's just been something that I've done forever, more like a habit than a hobby, more like a biological release than something I aspire to become. My writing is a part of me, like a hand or a foot, and not really something I set aside and try to shape as an accessory to my image.

I have always only written about one thing, stories about Northwest Indiana. I'm not interested in screenplays or poems. I don't have any mysteries up my sleeve. I only write about what I know, which is NW Indiana.

I'm inspired by any artist who I believe truly expresses themselves in a way that takes courage and honesty. Some writers I admire are Bret Easton Ellis, Cameron Crow, Charles Bukowski, or Earnest Hemingway. My two heroes are Bruce Lee and Michael Jordan.

Music is something I need to write. When I write, I need it to feel like a party. I want it to seem like I'm at a cool bar, not like a library, so I always have music on when I write. However, the music I listen to doesn't really have anything to do with what I prefer. I play music that matches the tone of the scene I want to write. If it's a romantic scene I'm playing 80's love songs. If it's a party scene, maybe I'm playing 90's Rap and Hip-Hop. If I'm just editing, I might be playing good country music. It depends. 

I have never thought of myself as powerful. I like to think of my art as weak. It hurts. It's a struggle. It's humiliating and embarrassing. Anything I've achieved through writing has been pure luck.

I want to become a black belt in Taekwondo before I die. Second to that, I want to publish another book.

My name is Rich Laskowski. I have a beautiful wife and five kids and I live in an amazing place. I'm the writer of Regionrat the novel and a producer for Regionrat the movie, but more than that I'm just a regular person.

©Alchemy & Elegy