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Bio: Mary Sullivan Esseff loves to laugh and have fun. Even when alone, she loves to entertain herself, sometimes by creating funny stories or plotting—er, that is—planning amusing events. Her husband is still looking for ways to retaliate from her legendary April Fool’s Day practical jokes. And her children have never quite recovered from the times she hid in their closets to scare the wits out of them—a trait she inherited from her mother, or was it from their cross-eyed Siamese cat, Khalil, the First? She still laughs about those fun times, but the psychiatrist bills bring her back to reality. Her stories can make you laugh or bring tears to your eyes. In fact, several stories have brought tears to the eyes of readers, family members to be exact, who appear as fictionalized characters in the stories. She emulates the mystery writers she loves to read by creating memorable characters who could be as heart-warming as Mother Teresa or as loathsome as Count Dracula. She has been able to draw on her tenacious wit and rare humor even when difficulties arise. When she had breast cancer, she invited friends to attend her April 1st hair-razing party, either wearing a hat or with a shaved head—well, no one actually arrived with a shaved head. During her year of treatment, she published an e-journal, Amazing Grace, Notes From a Breast Cancer Survivor. Mary is always searching for what is good, true and lovely. Always fair in making decisions, her husband says, “If you need a judge, ask Mary.” But, as with every true red head, she’s never afraid to say what needs to be said: “Back off, kid!” A problem-solver, Mary sees the whole picture, focuses on the real issues. Her characters exhibit many of these same qualities. Peter's Lebanese culture has inspired her series of "Khalil Khoury" stories, including, Love Made Visible, published in the anthology Three Naked Ladies Playing Cellos and The Evil Eye, published in an e-zine. Mary and her husband, Dr. Peter J. Esseff, are founders of Educational Systems for the Future®. Since 1969, they have co-authored a series of ProTrainer books, conducted workshops to teach trainers how to be Professional Trainers and written hundreds of instructional modules for Fortune 500 companies all over the globe. Recently, she wrote a mind-body-spirit curriculum for women over fifty-five: Prime Time Sister Circles and Prime Time Women Circles. In 2005, Mary was honored by her Alma Mater, Chestnut Hill College, to be a Charter Member of the Libris Society. Members were selected because they exemplified one or more of the qualities celebrated in the College's motto Fides-Caritas-Scientia (Faith-Charity-Knowledge). Besides reading and writing, Mary loves to create websites. She created their training (ESF-ProTrainer.com) and art (Arts-Galleria.com) sites, and a site for her daughter’s Rome residence (Villa Rosa Convent-Rome). She also loves to travel and has visited countries all over the world for business and pleasure, most recently traveling to Lebanon where Peter’s family gathered for a fabulous wedding—and to give her fodder for future stories. Mary and Peter have three children and three grandchildren and live in Tampa, FL.

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