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What’s it like to grow up in the city that never sleeps? The subjects of these stories share their memories of making it in New York — the place that made them who they are today.

Whether they’re born-and-bred Manhattanites or cross-country transplants, the writers of these tales recall their most memorable New York moments.

Growing up in New York sounds magical in theory: field-tripping to The Met, long afternoons on Central Park playgrounds, Broadway only a subway ride away...but there's also a grittier, less glamorous side to coming of age in a city that—seemingly—has it all.