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ITCF BC I started writing when I was in Kindergarten but it wasn’t until 27 years later when I owned my own business at the age of 32 that the idea of writing a book about my customers and the crazy things they do popped into my head.

I have a wonderful family and they have read every draft of my book. People who want to write think that a book is written and that’s it. Until they do write one and realize holy crap! They have to write and rewrite their story hundreds of times before the final version is complete.

I started collecting notes in 2002 about things customers said, did and stole out of my restaurant. Collected them until 2005 and then finally said, if I’m really gonna do this, I need to start putting all of this down on paper. So my partner and I booked a flight to Orlando, Fl. I sat poolside at the Marriott with my laptop and for 5 days put all of those notes into the very first draft of, Is The Coffee Fresh? Only to finally finish writing it officially in August of 2011 when I was hired by Hollywood actor Bradley Cooper to cook for him while he filmed a movie in Schenectady, NY where my restaurant Ambition is.

Nothing distracted me from my goal except me. I often had to put it down and walk away as most authors to. We get to personally attached and we start to lose focus and start writing in circles. And that is when it’s best to walk away for a week or month when we’re not so personally attached and start fresh again. I always knew this would be a published book. And I didn’t stop until it was!

I own a restaurant in upstate NY called Ambition Coffee & Eatery, Inc. Ambition is in an urban downtown city where we daily see a lot of unbalanced (over, under or self medicated) customers who stop short of nothing but outrageous behavior. Hookers, pimps, drunks and drugs they make for a very colorful story. These people are the inspiration for my book. I took the negative and turned it positive and now I’m having the last laugh (well actually the reader is) but all the pain I suffered enduring the insanity of these people has and is paying off.

A local artist painted the outside of Ambition several years ago. I purchased the painting and it’s hanging in Ambition. When the editor told me they designed a cover but it didn’t make sense unless you read the book first, I panicked. I meditated and the next day I got the idea to send them a picture of this painting, I got permission from the artist and the rest fell right into place.

My next project is never ending. I have since went on to fed another Hollywood star George Hamilton. As owner/chef/author of Ambition everyday is a project and everyday I get to reinvent myself and create a better story for my next book, that has yet to be penned. It is going to be more holistic then the first. I’m going to incorporate more deeply my journey of positive thinking and creating our own destiny through our thoughts. Stumbles and roadblocks are a part of everyone’s journey but we need to continue on even when everyone else thinks you should quit.




Have you ever asked yourself, “Why Me?”

A framed picture has disappeared from the men’s room wall… the freezer is suddenly and explicably on the fritz… a man at the counter can’t comprehend the cool cantaloupe soup… and the health inspector just walked through the door. Don’t panic – it’s just another day at Ambition Coffee House & Eatery.

Business co-owner and author Marc Renson takes you on an entertaining, outrageous journey of madness and mayhem experienced in the daily operation of Ambition, one of downtown Schenectady, New York’s most popular restaurants.

Read about celebrities who eat there and meet “the regulars” who keep the staff hopping with their cosmic questions: Is the sandwich special good? Does your cream of tomato soup have milk in it? Will the Cajun spices bother me? And of course… is the coffee fresh?

And while you’re at it, contemplate the question – Do crazy people really wear red shoes? The answer may have you glancing through your own closet.

Interestingly enough, enduring the insanity of what people say and do results in an understanding that everything happens for a reason. There is a purpose for meeting all the people along life’s journey, and they collectively contribute to the certain fact that there is an answer to “why me”… it is because dreams really do come true, as they have for proprietor Marc Renson.

As Marc would say, “Welcome to my world… and my ambition!”



About The Author:

After over a decade as co-owner of Ambition, a  favorite coffee house and eatery in Schenectady, New York, Marc Renson has seen it all – things that his years of restaurant training and a degree in Culinary Arts never quite prepared him for. From equipment issues to financial challenges to, well, interesting customers, his true education and mastery of his craft has come from years behind the counter of Ambition. Is the Coffee Fresh? is Marc’s first book, but probably not the last… you’ll understand why as you delve into its pages.


Get the book at Amazon Paperback and Kindle