- Associated Press - Sunday, June 7, 2015

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - An author and Columbus resident whose memoir inspired the Netflix prison drama series ‘Orange is the New Black’ visited an Ohio high school to talk about her prison experience.

Hundreds gathered at Westerville Central High School Tuesday to hear Piper Kerman speak at the school’s “Meet the Authors” series- a sold out event, The Columbus Dispatch reported (http://bit.ly/1M4zonK).

Kerman penned a memoir titled “Orange is the New Black: My Year in a Women’s Prison,” which was published in 2010. It’s based on the 15 months she spent in federal prison. The 45-year-old author talked about how she ended up in prison and how the series made it to Netflix.

She grew up in New England, and after graduating from Smith College met a woman who convinced her to transport drug money in the early 1990s. She was sentenced a few years later and eventually wrote her memoir.

“I really hoped that someone would read it other than my mother-in-law’s book club,” she told the audience.

Jenji Kohan, the creator of the Showtime series Weeds, read the book, met with Kerman and decided to turn it into a television series. The third season of “Orange is the New Black” is set to premier on Netflix on Friday.

Kerman also talked about her recent move with her husband from New York to Columbus to teach writing classes at the Marion Correctional Institution and the Ohio Reformatory for Women in Marysville.

“It is nice to be home in Ohio,” Kerman said.

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Information from: The Columbus Dispatch, http://www.dispatch.com

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