Freelance writer proving career goals can overcome epilepsy

April 11, 2013

Finding meaningful employment when you have an unpredictable seizure disorder can be challenging, but it’s an obstacle Pamela-Anne Kinney has overcome by pursuing her dream and harnessing her strengths as a storyteller.

Upon completing a freelance writing course in November 2011, Kinney embarked on a career that satisfies her love of writing while allowing her to work from home and be her own boss.

Pamela-Anne Kinney is proving epilepsy does not have to interfere with career ambitions.
Pamela-Anne Kinney is proving epilepsy does not have to interfere with career ambitions.

Kinney, who lives in Kitchener, Ont., says she long felt “frustrated” in her search for a career that met her ambitions and would not be affected by her epilepsy. She had several jobs before pursuing a writing career, but her seizure disorder was always an issue affecting her employment.

“The thing I find frustrating is never knowing when the next seizure is going to occur,” says Kinney.

“Freelance writing is a career that can work around my seizures. I can work from home and be able to work on my own schedule. I still have much to learn in this field but I am enjoying learning as I continue my journey towards becoming a successful writer. . . .

“I know there is life and happiness beyond the seizures and I’m reaching out to grab a piece of it.”

Kinney says she can’t pinpoint the moment when she decided to become a freelance writer, but the important thing others living with a seizure disorder should know is that success comes down to setting personal goals and sticking to them.

Anyone living with a seizure disorder needs to keep this top of mind, she says.

“Start with small goals that are within reach. Remember nothing worthwhile is ever easy to achieve, so if there is some bumps in the road along the way no worries; this is all part of life’s journey,” she says.

“Just keep moving forward towards your goal and eventually you will reach it.”

Eventually, Kinney says she aspires to work as a proposal writer for an organization like Epilepsy Ontario where she can utilize her writing talents with her first-hand knowledge of living with a disability.

Kinney admits her journey has hit a lot of bumps. Now 48, she had her first seizure when she was 16, after being struck by a hit-and-run driver. While Kinney lives with tonic-clonic seizures, she has never let them dominate her life. She lives by herself in an apartment, which she says surprises some people who are amazed she’s not “afraid” to live on her own.

“I explain that my epilepsy is part of my life but it does not totally control or run my life,” she says.

You can read more about Kinney’s story by clicking here.

If you have feedback on this story, or have a story of your own that you would like to share, please contact the newsroom at 800-294-0051, ext. 23, or e-mail deron(at) You can also leave a comment below.

Writer: Deron Hamel

* If you wish to reprint this story, please include following notice: “This story originally appeared on the Epilepsy Ontario website.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *