By Chris Witherspoon
Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson recently took a break from penning hip-hop to write Playground, an autobiographical novel about a teen bully.
The story follows a 13-year-old named Butterball who must atone for his bullying ways.
“I had a strong desire to write Playground because I wanted to explore how a kid becomes a bully,” 50 Cent said in a statement. “This book would have been very helpful for me growing up and now that I have a teenage son, it is my goal that this will have a positive influence on all teenagers.”
The G-Unit founder has been linked to violence and bullying on several occasions throughout his career. He’s participated in on-going public beefs with Ja Rule, Nas, Jadakiss, Fat Joe and various other rappers.
In an exclusive for Entertainment Weekly, the rapper released the first three chapters of Playground.
50 Cent admits to having a troubled past during the book’s introduction and discusses what he has learned from “living on the edge.”
I’ll be the first to admit that not everything I’ve done in my life has been role-model material. I’ve been on the wrong side of the law. I’ve been in violent situations. I’ve also been a bully. I know how a person gets to be like that. That’s why I wanted to tell this story: to show a kid who has become a bully–how and why that happened, and whether or not he can move past it.
Writing Playground was a personal journey for me. There’s a lot of me in Butterball. I drew on events that happened in my childhood and adolescence as well as things I saw around me. I also tapped into some of the feelings I remember having at that age–feelings about my family, feelings about my future, feelings about other kids on the playground.
Living life on the edge has taught me a lot, like the fact that being mentally strong will get you ahead in life. But being a bully won’t get you anywhere. Some kids don’t figure that out until it’s too late.Does Butterball? You’ll have to read the book to find out.
This is not the rapper’s first experience in the publishing business. He has also released a memoir, From Pieces to Weight, as well as a self-help guide co-authored by Robert Greene called The 50th Law.