Nawazuddin Siddiqui’s memoirs titled, An Ordinary Life will be released soon. “It will officially be out in October. We haven’t decided on a date as yet,” says Nawaz, excited about telling his side of the story so far. “It will cover the entire period from my childhood to the time I arrived in Mumbai. So, it’s pretty much written at the mid-point of my life,” says Nawaz spilling the beans on his book.
“I’ve been as honest in my memoirs as I could be. I haven’t hidden anything. In fact, some people in my life are going to be deeply offended when they read what I have to say. To those who are hurt by my memoirs, I want to say sorry right now, but I had no choice. Either I told my story with utmost honesty or not at all. There’s no point in lies or half-truths if you want to tell your story to the world.” Nawaz is aware that many Bollywood actors and filmmakers have jumped on to the biographic bandwagon. He hasn’t read any of his colleagues’ biographies. “Waqt kahaan hai? I barely had time to complete my own memoirs.”
Nawaz says he took the plunge because his publishers were keen. “Penguin India not only convinced me to tell my story, but they also got a co-author on board. Rituparna Chatterjee, who is from the US, came down to India to spend time with me and record my experiences.”
The busy actor says it has pretty much been a roller-coaster ride of recorded experiences for Chatterjee. “Whenever I had time I called her over to share my experiences. Not only was it about finding time in my schedule, lekin mood bhi toh hona chahiye na? (One has to be in the mood, too). I couldn’t start introspecting about my life any time I was free to do so. Every phase of my life has a different connotation, relevance and significance for me. I can’t respond to every experience in the same way. So, basically the writer had to wean all the information out of me. Main unke sayyam ko salaam karta hoon (I salute her patience).”
The result, says Nawaz, is impressive. “I shouldn’t be saying this myself. But the book has turned out the way I hoped it would. I think I’ve a lot to share with people who come from small towns to the big cities with their big dreams. If I didn’t find my story inspirational I wouldn’t have put it down in a book.”
A film version of Nawaz’s memoirs is not ruled out. “Let’s see how far the book goes. Right now, I am excited about how people will respond to my brutally honest confessions. Being the hero of the story has never been a priority. I don’t mind being seen in an unflattering light.”