Katie Rose Guest Pryal

Adjunct Professor of Law

Areas of Expertise

  • Disability Law
  • Legal Writing


Katie Rose Guest Pryal, J.D., Ph.D., joined the Carolina Law faculty in 2009 as an adjunct in legal writing; shortly thereafter she joined the legal writing faculty in a full-time position. She left the faculty to pursue a full-time writing career in 2014. She was delighted to rejoin the faculty as an adjunct in 2019 to teach Writing for the Bar, an upper-level legal writing course she helped design. A specialist in legal writing, she’s written many textbooks on law and writing, including Core Grammar for Lawyers (4th ed. 2020, with Ruth Ann McKinney), The Complete Legal Writer (2d ed. 2020, with Alexa Z. Chew), and the Complete Bar Writer (2020, with Alexa Z. Chew). Dr. Pryal is an award-winning author and frequent keynote speaker. She is the author of Life of the Mind Interrupted: Essays on Mental Health and Disability in Higher Education (2017), #1 Amazon bestseller; The Freelance Academic: Transform Your Creative Life and Career (2019), winner of a Gold INDIE award; and Even If You’re Broken: Essays on Sexual Assault and #MeToo (2019), winner of a Gold IPPY award. She’s also written three novels, Entanglement, Chasing Chaos, and Fallout Girl. She is a columnist for Women in Higher Education, where she covers gender issues, labor, and academia. Her popular column for Catapult magazine, “Mom, Interrupted,” is about family life, mental illness, and raising disabled kids as a disabled parent. Her column “Public Writing Life” for the Chronicle of Higher Education advises academics who wish to transition to writing for public audiences. She speaks frequently about mental health and disability, writing and publishing, gender issues, and higher education.


  • 1998, Duke University, AB French and English, cum laude
  • 2000, John Hopkins University Writing Seminars, MA Creative Writing
  • 2003, UNC School of Law, JD
  • 2007, UNC-Greensboro, Ph.D. Rhetoric and Composition and Certificate in Women's Studies

Selected Publications

Reframing Sanity: Scapegoating the Mentally Ill in the Case of Jared Loughner, in RE/FRAMING IDENTIFICATIONS 159 (Michelle Baliff, ed.) (Waveland Press, 2013).

The Genre Discovery Approach: Preparing Law Students to Write Any Legal Document, 59 WAYNE L. REV. 351 (2013).
Westlaw | Lexis/Nexis | SSRN | Hein

CORE GRAMMAR FOR COLLEGE (Carolina Academic Press, 2013).
Document Link

Hollywood's White Legal Heroes and the Legacy of Slave Codes, in AFTERIMAGES OF SLAVERY: ESSAYS ON APPERANCES IN RECENT AMERICAN FILMS, LITERATURE, TELEVISION AND OTHER MEDIA 145 (M. Allen and S. D. Williams, eds.) (McFarland Press, 2012).
SSRN | PS374.S58 A38 2012

The Rhetoric of Sissy-Slogans: How Denigrating the Feminine Perpetuates the Terror Wars, 15 J. GENDER RACE & JUSTICE 503 (2012).
Westlaw | Lexis/Nexis | SSRN | Hein

The Creativity Mystique and the Rhetoric of Mood Disorders, 31:3 DISABILITY STUD. Q. (2011).
SSRN | Document Link

CORE GRAMMAR FOR LAWYERS (Carolina Academic Press, 2011).
Document Link

Walking in Another's Skin: Failure of Empathy in To Kill A Mockingbird, in HARPER LEE'S TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD: NEW ESSAYS 174 (ed. Michael Meyer, Scarecrow Press of Rowman and Littlefield Publishing Group, 2010).
SSRN | PS3562.E353 T63375

The Genre of the Mood Memoir and the Ethos of Psychiatric Disability, 40 RHETORIC SOC'Y Q. 479 (2010).

A SHORT GUIDE TO WRITING ABOUT LAW (Pearson Education, 2010).
SSRN | KF250 .P79 2011

In the Media