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T.I. Leaves Prison as an Author and Reality Star

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How did T.I. spend his first day of freedom? Signing paperwork that expanded his resume to include "author" and "reality star." Just hours after the rapper's release from Arkansas' Forrest City Correctional Facility, where Tip served 10 months for violating probation, T.I. firmed up deals to release his debut novel (yes, a work of fiction and not a memoir) and film a new VH1 reality show that'll document his second attempt to rebound from a lengthy prison sentence. Violating parole was the most profitable decision T.I. ever made!

HarpersCollins has secured the rights to Power & Beauty, the novel T.I. co-authored with David Ritz (wonder who did all the heavy lifting in that duo), and plans to release the book this October. According to Billboard.biz, the novel tells "a fictional tale about two childhood friends torn apart by dangerous dealings on the streets of Atlanta." While the key words there are "a fictional tale," the story is obviously inspired by the rapper's friendship with Philant Johnson, who was shot and killed at a post-concert party in 2006.

The VH1 reality show marks the second time T.I. has starred in a Viacom series: In 2009, he was the center of an MTV miniseries called T.I.'s Road to Redemption: 45 Days to Go that documented his community service efforts before going to prison on federal weapons charges. This time around, his post-prison life is in the spotlight. VH1 will begin airing the series in December, so it's a good bet that's when Tip is aiming to release his second post-prison album, following last year's No Mercy.

[Photo: John Amis/AP]

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