Knicely Done: Mother’s legacy enhanced with writers’ lecture series

Top-selling author James Patterson to be featured on stage
An Omaha attorney took his mother's passion and turned it into a lecture series for the public, attracting some of the world's best-selling authors.
Published: Apr. 6, 2023 at 9:34 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Omaha attorney Paul Brown is an avid reader -- and he attributes much of that passion to his late mother, Marian Marsh Brown.

“The first book my mother wrote was published in 1946,” Brown said. “She authored over 19 books ranging from fiction to biographies such as Nathan Hale. She wrote ‘The Swamp Fox’ and Disney picked that book up.”

It’s his mother’s 70-year writing career that motivated Brown to organize an annual lecture series in Omaha featuring best-selling authors in an informal question-answer presentation. John Grisham was the first speaker in 2016.

This year’s event, set for April 11 at Baxter Arena, features one of the world’s best-selling authors, James Patterson, who has over 300 books to his credit. In addition, Patterson’s wife Susan will join him on stage to speak about her recently published book, “Things I Wish I Told My Mother.”

It’s Susan’s first endeavor as an author, and the Pattersons told 6 News that the reviews have been very favorable. She drew on her own experiences with her late mother to write the story.

“I just reread the book,” she said. “I still laughed and cried in the most appropriate spots.”

James wrote his first book in 1976 and the initial reaction to his novel was not promising.

“I got turned down by 31 publishers,” he said. “Then someone picked it up and I ended up winning an Edgar for the best first novel.”

This year’s lecture series is presented by the family of Marian Marsh Brown jointly with UNO, where Brown taught English. The series begins at 7 p.m. and is free to the public.

“Everyone who loves to read is invited to attend and it’s free,” said Paul Brown. “We want to honor my Mom and encourage everyone to read.”

Knicely Done!