Portrait of Ramon Rodriguez

Ramon Rodriguez, Zooey Magazine Today, we get to share with you all one of the men on our radar: Ramon Rodriguez of the much-talked-about "Gang Related." He talks to us about his heavily-packed schedule while still being able to work in some writing time (since he's working on a screenplay), and how he manages to wind down after these busy days.

What does a typical day include for you? Lately, I've been traveling a lot to do press for "Gang Related" so all of this has been up in the air. But usually start off by waking up... That's always a good start. Then from that point on, anything can happen and it's quite different day to day. Lately though, it's all been about "Gang Related" and talking about the show and getting people excited about it.

How do you like to relax or wind down after a long day? Because it looks like you've been nonstop working on promoting your latest project "Gang Related." Catching up on reading always relaxes me. If I get a chance to jump in a steam room, that's key! Sailing is a true escape for me or if I get a chance to be out in nature; that always does the trick. Also, just sitting on the couch and catching up on shows and movies, while eating some delicious comfort food... That always feels good.

Ramon Rodriguez, Zooey Magazine What kinds of hobbies and activities do you enjoy? Any musical talents?

Usually, I do some sort of physical activity... Gym, boxing, basketball, Krav Maga, biking, hiking, sailing. I also enjoy working on puzzles and games. I play the piano, so sometimes I do that or jam with some friends on the congas. I also eat out often, since I'm always on the move, but I love cooking or going over to friends' places to eat.

We shot with your co-star Shantel VanSanten and adore her. What's the chemistry like so far among your cast? We really lucked out with an amazing group of people that all got along from the start. During the filming process and spending so much time together, we got so much closer. When we wrapped the season, it was bitter sweet. However, we've hung out several times post-show and have gotten together to watch some of the episodes which is always a blast. It's a blessing to be able to work with a beautifully talented group of people that you truly enjoy being around and are inspired by.

So your show stars YOU. Tell us how important it was for this show to air, because we haven't seen much like it on television! I think audiences were hungry for something like this on network television. Whether it's the diversity of the show or of the writing and acting. I think now audiences are getting their thirst quenched in a major way. While traveling around the country promoting the show, I've had so many people saying how much they love it and that they had been waiting for something like this. They're also taken by how complex the characters are and how ambitious it is. I'm hoping we get to continue to quench their thirst and make this show that I'm extremely proud of.

Ramon Rodriguez, Zooey Magazine

You're a published writer - tell us about this knack for writing. Would you say you're more inclined to write like a journalist, or how would you categorize your writing? Currently, I’m working on a screenplay with Rosie Perez and I've loved that process. It's been a long time in the making and it's a passion piece that is near and dear to me. It's been a cathartic process where I've been able to see my growth both personally and as a writer. It's something I would definitely like to continue to do. Telling stories that can hopefully inspire and move people really excites me since that's what I enjoy.

With plenty of news to talk about in the media, what has drawn your attention lately? When you log onto CNN, or whichever outlet, what topic are you likely to read? Politics? Finances, etc.? I get a lot of my news from NPR while I'm driving or from the NY Times. I usually gravitate towards politics, world news, sports, space and science, and the arts.

What would you say is an issue you'd like to see resolved immediately? The government working together for the greater good and truly serving the people. Also... We need immediate conservation of our planet.

Photographer // Jessica Castro Stylist // Melinda Rodriguez