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Liz Smith reups with papers

Columnist inks with Newsday, Times Mirror, N.Y. Post

NEW YORK — Syndicated columnist Liz Smith has reupped her contract with Newsday, Times Mirror and the New York Post. Deal will keep Smith, Gotham’s reigning queen of gossip, through 2002, with an option for another year.

Smith, 74, has been writing daily newspaper columns since shortly after she arrived in New York in 1949; of the nine newspapers that were in the city then, Smith had worked for seven of them.

In addition to inking her column deal, Smith has completed her memoir, which has been three years in the writing. She recently handed in the tome, titled “Natural Blonde,” to Hyperion. The book traces Smith’s five decades of landing celebrity scoops, and battling press agents and editors.

“Natural Blonde” will be publishing in September.

Smith was repped by lawyer David Blasband in her column deal and by Joni Evans of the William Morris Agency in the book pact.

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