Last Updated Feb.2022

Katie Rose Guest Pryal, J.D., Ph.D., is a keynote speaker, author, and expert in mental health and disability. She is autistic and has bipolar disorder, and she writes and speaks about her experiences living with a neurodivergent mind.

She is the author of the forthcoming Darkness Interrupted: Reckoning with Mental Health in Higher Education (University Press of Kansas 2023), the #1 Amazon bestseller Life of the Mind Interrupted: Essays on Mental Health and Disability in Higher Education (Blue Crow Books 2017); the INDIE-Gold-winning The Freelance Academic: Transform Your Creative Life and Career (Blue Crow Books 2019); and the IPPY-Gold-winning Even If You’re Broken: Essays on Sexual Assault and #MeToo (Blue Crow Books 2019).

She is also the author of the Hollywood Lights Series of romance novels, all of which center mental disability such as bipolar disorder and PTSD. Her novels include Entanglement (2015), Chasing Chaos (2016), Fallout Girl (2018), and Take Your Charming Somewhere Else (2021), which won the 2022 IPPY Gold Medal in Romance.

She is the author five legal writing handbooks, writes frequently for national publications, and is a Pushcart Prize nominee. She is an Adjunct Professor Law at the University of North Carolina School of Law, where she spent 10 years as full-time faculty. She lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, with her spouse and two children, where she enjoys playing USTA league tennis and riding horses.

Speaker Page at BrightSight Speakers
Faculty Page at UNC Law

Awards and Recognition

  • TAKE YOUR CHARMING SOMEWHERE ELSE won the 2022 IPPY Gold Medal in the Romance category. (An IPPY is an Independent Publisher Book Award for small press titles.)
  • “The Holes We Live With,” essay in FULL GROWN PEOPLE, was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in December 2021.
  • EVEN IF YOU’RE BROKEN selected by RAINN as a featured title on their book list to learn about sexual violence, October 2021.
  • LIFE OF THE MIND INTERRUPTED and THE FREELANCE ACADEMIC were named to THE PROFESSOR IS IN Top 12 Books About Academia in 2021.
  • THE FREELANCE ACADEMIC was named Recommended Reading about Higher Ed by FROM PHD TO LIFE in 2021.
  • EVEN IF YOU’RE BROKEN: ESSAYS ON SEXUAL ASSAULT AND #METOO won a 2020 IPPY Gold Medal. (An IPPY is an Independent Publisher Book Award for small press titles.)
  • BOOKRIOT picked LIFE OF THE MIND INTERRUPTED: ESSAYS ON MENTAL HEALTH AND DISABILITY IN HIGHER EDUCATION as one of the Top 5 Books to Help You Understand Higher Education in 2019.
  • Essay in CATAPULT Magazine, “The World Doesn’t Bend for Disabled Kids (or Disabled Parents),” was the Most-Read Article in the magazine of 2018.
  • CHAPEL HILL MAGAZINE picked FALLOUT GIRL: A NOVEL as one of its Top 5 Books From Local Authors to Take to the Beach in 2018.
  • Essay in MOTHERWELL Magazine, “With New Life Comes a Fear of Death,” was named one of the Top-10 Most Popular Articles in the magazine of 2017.


If you are with the media and would like to interview me, great! Email me at contact@krgp.us.


If you are interested in booking me to speak, contact BrightSight Speakers, and my amazing team there will help you. Read below for a detailed description of my expertise.

01. About Me

Award-winning author, speaker, and expert on mental health and disability.

02. Book Me

03. Letter from Me

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