Nonfiction Books

I’ve written many nonfiction books, some on mental health, some on writing, some on law, some on grammar, and more. My books are published with Oxford University Press, Carolina Academic Press, Pearson Education, and more. You can learn more about my nonfiction books by clicking the covers below or by scrolling down. Press and book reviews are located at the bottom of the page.

Visit the website for The Complete Legal Writer and the forthcoming Complete Series of law books. I’m also the author of the Core Grammar series of online learning tools, including Core Grammar for Lawyers

EVEN IF YOU’RE BROKEN: Essays on Sexual Assault and #MeToo

(c) 2019

From the bestselling author of LIFE OF THE MIND INTERRUPTED comes an essay collection “rich in vulnerability and candor.”

How do we make a good life in a world where sexual violence always lurks in the shadows?

Pryal, rape survivor, law professor, and bestselling author, takes on the rapidly changing legal and social landscape of #MeToo and Title IX. Moving from the deeply personal to the socially critical, the essays in this collection are incisive dispatches from survivor territory.

In these fiery essays, Pryal documents reporting her rape to a university Title IX office, in grim, yet hilarious, detail. She turns her law-trained eye to the Bill Cosby case and the musician Kesha’s struggle to break free of her recording contract because of alleged abuse by her producer. This book is for survivors, those who love them, and those who want to make the world a better place for them. These stories strip away shame. They burn off fear. They lay bare the injustices survivors face and how we can fight them. Best of all, Pryal shows how she has fought those injustices herself—and by showing us, she inspires us to do the same.

“Rich in vulnerability and candor, Pryal’s evocative essays remind us that the survivor journey is far from linear, and that there is power and beauty in our imperfect journey.” -Andrea Pino, co-author of We Believe You: Survivors of Campus Sexual Assault Speak Out

THE FREELANCE ACADEMIC: Transform Your Creative Life and Career

June 2019: The Freelance Academic

(c) 2019

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Higher education has changed—and we have to change with it. The Freelance Academic will show you how.

When Katie Pryal started her career in higher education, she did everything right—she thought. With a law degree, a doctorate, and a federal clerkship, how could her career go off track? But this is higher ed in the new millennium. “Off track” is the new normal. So, slowly, she made her own career, one she dubbed “the freelance academic” in a long-running column in The Chronicle of Higher Education of the same name.

Five years after leaving academia, Pryal has created a living for herself. In The Freelance Academic, she tells her story and provides accurate (and sometimes blistering) critique of how higher ed as pushed its workforce to the margins. Best of all, she gives plain, practical advice for how to make the career you want, one that uses your strengths, and your creativity, to thrive.

“A cautionary tale and a beacon of hope.” Foreword Reviews

“A roadmap that’s as practical as it is hopeful.” -Bestselling author Camille Pagán for Booktrib Magazine

“So many academics—current, former, and struggling—will see themselves in Pryal’s story. I hope just as many see all of the possibilities she enumerates, and understand, as she does, that the passions and talents that draw us to the university in the first place are often best used outside it.” -Rebecca Schuman, Ph.D., author of Schadenfreude, A Love Story

“With candor and vulnerability, Pryal shares her own experiences and hard-fought wisdom.” -Amy Impellizzeri, award-winning novelist and author of Lawyer Interrupted: Successfully Transitioning from the Practice of Law–and Back Again

“An indictment of how the academy squanders talent by embracing the gig economy through contingent labor and the devaluation of teaching. A new, necessary book.” -Catherine J. Prendergast, Ph.D., author of Buying into English: Language and Investment in the New Capitalist World.

LIFE OF THE MIND INTERRUPTED: Essays on Mental Health and Disability in Higher Education

(c) 2017

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Academia isn’t an easy place to be if your brain isn’t quite right.

Colleagues carelessly call each other “schizo” and “bipolar.” Another colleague is fired—easy enough to do these days, when most college teachers no longer have tenure—for “instability.” In these ways and many more, psychiatrically disabled people working in higher education are reminded every day that their privilege, their very livelihoods, can be stripped away by the groundless suspicions of others. Their lives can be, in an instant, interrupted.

The essays in this book cover topics such as disclosure of disabilities, accommodations and accessibility, how to be a good abled friend to a disabled person, the trigger warnings debate, and more. Written for a popular audience, for those with disabilities and for those who want to learn more about living a disabled life, Life of the Mind Interrupted aims to make higher education, and the rest of our society, more humane.

“Katie Rose Guest Pryal is one of the foremost writers of disability and higher education we have today.” -Catherine J. Prendergast, author of Buying into English: Language and Investment in the New Capitalist World

“These thoughtfully chosen and arranged essays grapple with issues relevant to disabled students and scholars as well as those who would be allies. With a particular focus on mental illness and other forms of invisible disability, Pryal calls on us to do much, much better.” -Kecia Ali, Ph.D., author of Sexual Ethics and Islam: Feminist Reflections on Qur’an, Hadith, and Jurisprudence

“Pryal’s wit and humor shine through even as she tackles harrowing subjects, like living with depression and suicide. She shows us how important it is to make academia, and our world, more accessible for everyone. This is not a book to miss.” -Kelly J. Baker, author of Sexism Ed: Essays on Gender and Labor in Higher Education

WE ARE ALL ENEMIES OF THE STATE: And Other Essays on Speech

(c) 2019

When the president declares war against the media, he is declaring war against the people of the United States.

In addition to being a bestselling novelist, Katie Rose Guest Pryal is an attorney, an essayist, and a legal commentator. WE ARE ALL ENEMIES OF THE STATE collects some of Pryal’s writing over the past two years on how the First Amendment has fared under recent government administration. This book will appeal to anyone interested in free speech, freedom of the press, and how we must guard these important rights.


Cover image of the book a Short Guide to Writing About Law

(c) 2010

This writing handbook teaches non-experts in law how to read legal documents and incorporate legal sources into their research and academic writing. Click here to download a free PDF of the Table of Contents and Preface. This book is designed for writers in many types of courses and situations: rhetoric and law courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels; writing in the disciplines (WID) courses that focus on law, political science, and other topics; writing across the curriculum (WAC) courses in law, criminal justice, political science, and the like; any course that includes legal texts as part of their primary reading; and more.

A Short Guide to Writing About Law teaches readers how to read law and how to write about law. The law is a complex professional discourse that has begun to appear in a variety of courses including political science, criminal justice, sociology, journalism, and law and literature.  The book offers an accessible introduction to the rhetoric of law, legal opinions and statutes, and wide-access online search engines for conducting research of legal topics.

The book includes different writing assignments such as a case brief, a rhetorical analysis, an annotated outline, and a research paper modeled on a law journal article.

A Short Guide to Writing About Law starts with an overview of the Anglo-American legal system and moves to a discussion of lawyers as rhetors, including a discussion of the Sophists. The book covers syllogisms and the Aristotelian appeals, as well as rhetorical analysis of legal arguments.

01. About Me

Author, essayist, sometime law professor. Topics that will get me talking: mental health and disability, sexual violence, and making words happen. I want to be your friend, even if I have trouble showing it.

02. Support Me

03. Letter

05. Commentary