Mary Vigliante Szydlowski

Mary and Cynthia A. Lovely (in the hat) signing copies of Chicken Soup for the Soul: Merry Christmas! at the Northshire Bookstore in Saratoga Springs, NY as part of Saratoga’s Victorian Streetwalk festivities.

An ugly Christmas tree? One side has boughs. The other is bare. There's a hole in the middle. No branches, just air!

This tree has a problem! It's skimpy and scraggly. It looks awfully thin. It's leaning to one side. Half dead! Done in!

Did you ever wish you could be a fairy godmother, wave a magic wand, and turn a sad girl into a princess? I got my wish when I started volunteering for the Cinderella Project of the Capital Region. Read about my experiences in "Volunteering and Giving Back."

This is Chi Chi. Read about her encounter with a hungry hawk in Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Dog Did What?

Chi Chi under a not so ugly Christmas tree.

Chicken Soup For the Soul Books



October 2015

This collection of 101 heartwarming and entertaining stories of holiday traditions, family, and goodwill will spread the wonder and joy of the holiday season. A fantastic holiday gift and a great way to start the season!

Christmas is a festive and joyful time of year, a time of family, friends, and traditions. You will delight in reading the 101 merry and touching stories of love, joy, and wonder. And all the stories are “Santa safe” so they can keep the magic alive for the whole family.


My poem "THE UGLY CHRISTMAS TREE" appears in this book!


Available at:


August 2015

101 Inspiring Stories of Purpose and Passion

One person can make a significant difference in the lives of others. This collection of 101 inspiring stories celebrates volunteers and those who give back, and also shows how the biggest beneficiaries are the givers themselves.

Volunteers and people who give back are models of unconditional kindness, compassion, and love. You choose hope over despair, optimism over cynicism, and caring over indifference. And by serving others, you also help yourself. In this inspiring collection of 101 personal stories by and for volunteers and those who give back, you and your fellow unsung heroes will get some of the recognition and appreciation you deserve.


My story "Fairy Godmothers" about my experiences volunteering with the Cinderella Project is in this book.


Available at:


August 2014

Our dogs make us smile every day with their crazy antics and acts of love. This book is full of hilarious and heartwarming stories about the many ways our canine companions surprise us, make us laugh, and touch our hearts.

Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Dog Did What? will have you saying just that, as you read these 101 humorous and heartwarming stories about our lovable, goofy, and comical canines. Whether funny or serious, or both, these stories will make you laugh and touch your heart.


My story "Chi Chi and the Hungry Hawk" appears in this book.


Available at: