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Dear 'Diary'

Alicia Keys signs two-book deal. Putnam will publish a memoir and a book of lyrics

At the ripe old age of 23, Alicia Keys is ready to write her memoirs. Publisher G.P. Putnam's Sons announced Thursday that it had signed the R&B songstress to a two-book deal. One book, named after her recent hit album, will be called ''The Diary of Alicia Keys,'' and will tell her autobiography in the form of journal entries, tracing her life from piano prodigy and daughter of a single mom to international stardom. ''It isn't everyday you are offered the opportunity to publish someone as unbelievably talented as Alicia Keys,'' Putnam president Carole Baron said in a press release about the memoir, which is due in fall 2005. ''Her story is as inspiring as it is astonishing, and we are excited to be publishing her story, in her own words.''

First, however, comes ''Songbook,'' a collection of poems and lyrics that's due in November. It's not clear how Keys, who has released just two albums, will fill a book-length anthology, but Putnam senior editor David Highfill suggested that ''Songbook'' will be about quality, not just quantity. ''It's the wisdom and emotional power of her lyrics that reveal the warmth and dignity she brings to her composition,'' he said in a statement. ''Her words and her music are a stunning combination and I believe we will be reveling in her art and listening to what she has to say for many years to come.''

Originally posted May 21, 2004
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