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You found us! How to use this blog

28 Feb

Updates, May 2012:
Welcome, new readers! We are growing daily and so happy to have you here. 
Have you found our Facebook and Twitter yet? Join the conversation, meet other newcomers, ask us anything!

This is NewNYers.com, the definitive guide to moving to New York City as a young professional. We give a running start to the thousands of twentysomethings who move to the city each month, many of whom are unsure how this whole thing is gonna turn out. We’re here to tell you the truth about NYC: It’s not impenetrable, impossible, prohibitively expensive, or too much of a pipe dream to really do it.

Yes, life in NYC is challenging, but if you hold tight to the gratitude and allure you felt in those first few months, it will stay with you for years. There’s too much to appreciate to be jaded.

Sarah Protzman Howlett, founder of NewNYers.com.

In these pages, you’ll find nearly everything you need to get started on your new life in NYC, including how to prepare before you even land. Via the search and categories at right, you can read about how to apartment hunt, how to navigate public transit, and how to spend wisely while you’re having funfun, fun! Most of our readers spend a lot of time on this site, devouring the posts and bookmarking them for future reference. We hope you’ll do the same! Now, for the FAQ:

I’m trying to get a job in NYC before I move. Why isn’t anyone hiring me?
Usually because of the sheer number of capable people already living here. It’s hard, but not impossible, to get the attention of a company from, say, Georgia, when there’s an equally qualified person, resume-wise, two subway stops away. Having said that, don’t give up contacting companies in the city, and remember that your network is always bigger than you think. Better yet, fly out for a week of informational interviews and networking events. If you take the leap and move without a job, consider temping — maybe working in the afternoons or evenings while you go on interviews in the mornings would work for you.

How much money should I save before I move?
As you can imagine, there’s no definitive number — but I usually ballpark it at around $3,000. If you have a roommate or two or three, there’s no reason this amount shouldn’t last you at least a couple months, food and PBR included. Even if the New York dream is just a glimmer in your eye at this point, start socking away $20 a week; it’ll buy you precious flexibility and peaceful sleep once you’re here.

Can I afford to live alone? Roommates are soooooo freshman year. 
Not if rent would have you treading at or near the 45%-of-your-income mark. A cool life is way more satisfying than a cool apartment, I promise. Part of the New York adventure is meeting new folks. Move in with someone you don’t know — tiny apartments and bff’s don’t mix — via rooms/shares on Craigslist. Open houses will make your head spin, but you’ll find something right for you. Not to mention they’ll give you great stories to tell.

I have expensive taste and a huge sense of entitlement. Will I survive in this booming metropolis of temptation?
No.

What’s it like to date in Manhattan?
Educational. Bottom line is, you’ll have good dates and bad, but there are great people out there, and it’s important to meet a wide swath of people. You’ll see new places and experience haunts you never would’ve found on your own. And remember, almost everything is funny in hindsight.

Should I send you my own experiences, thoughts or tips?
Yes! Join the discussion on Facebook and Twitter, and email me at sarah.protzman@gmail.com.

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Former NewNewYorker of the Week: Joel Lyons

26 Apr

[The second in an occasional series on readers who’ve moved onward and upward since taking the leap into NYC life. Subtext: This can be you!]

My living situation is: Living with my significant other.

Joel Lyons, co-founder of NYC Media Buzz, in Central Park.

My first job in the city was: A content editor for a mobile/online group.
My job now is: A marketing associate with a restaurant group.

The best advice I have for newcomers is: Read NewNewYorkers and subscribe to Time Out New York.

The toughest time I’ve gone through since moving here is:
 I was brave (or stupid) and moved to New York without a job during the peak of the recession….I made sure that I was dressed and ready by 9 a.m. every morning just to guarantee that if someone called for an interview, I could run out the door and go to it. The rejections during that time period sucked, but once I got a yes (and my first job), I was very relieved!

I can’t imagine my New York life without: 
A smartphone. It makes navigating the city, and finding good places to eat, much easier.

When I was brand new to the city, I can’t believe I: Relied solely on Kmart for all my purchases.

I’m still learning about
: The outer boroughs. I live in Queens, so I’ve done a lot of exploring here, but I’m starting to learn sections of Brooklyn and would like to get to the Bronx more often, too.

My proudest achievement so far has been:
 Becoming the go-to person when folks have questions about the subway. Next goal: mastering the bus system.

I’ve been thrilled to meet:
 My significant other.

A gem I recently discovered is: Essex, a farmers’ market/grocery store with a delicious restaurant that makes killer French toast.

Something I hope to accomplish this summer is: Jam with the Central Park Dance Skaters Association.

This blog is a book!

25 Feb

BROOKLYN, Feb. 25 — The Guide for New New Yorkers is out, y’all.

Click here to purchase your copy at 20 percent off (sale starts this afternoon) for its debut week ONLY, and scroll down for the full table of contents.

More about the Guide: The advice you’ve come to rely on now fits in your purse or briefcase. Based on the most-read posts from NewNewYorkers.info, The Guide for New New Yorkers goes beyond guidebooks and Google to help young professionals build a happy life in their adopted city of New York. Writer/editor Sarah Protzman Howlett humorously parlays her own New York journey into an encouraging book of essays, advice and practical lists.

Click the image to enlarge the table of contents.

On a personal note, I never would’ve done this second book without your wonderful support for my 2009 memoir, Two Years in New York City. Thank you, readers, family and friends.