In real life the "New York Observer" published the story of the four young ladies first as an weekly column.
Candace Bushnell began writing for the New York Observer in 1993. She created the humorous column for the paper. It appeared from 1994 through 1996.
Called "Sex and the City," the column was based on her own personal dating experiences and those of her friends. Her Alterego in the sitcom, Carrie Bradshaw, writes also a weekly column called "Sex and the City" for a fictional newspaper, "The New York Star".
Sex and the City is a collection of essays by Candace Bushnell based on her and her friends' lifestyles. It was first published in 1997, and re-published in 2001, 2006, and in 2008 as 10th anniversary movie tie-in edition.
The book is an anthology of columns that Bushnell began writing in 1994 for The New York Observer. The book was loosely adapted into a long-running HBO television series also called Sex and the City and Sex and the City (film).
Though the novel, like the series, is told from the point of view of columnist Carrie Bradshaw, her adventures include more and varied friends than the three primaries featured in the series. Some situations and personalities were adapted for the show, but the characters who bear the names Charlotte York, Miranda Hobbs, and Samantha Jones are minor and contrast their television counterparts.
Charlotte is a sex-crazed Englishwoman in the book; in the series she is a naïve, sometimes prudish American WASP. Miranda is a cable executive in the book, but a lawyer in the series. Samantha is a movie producer in the book, but a public relations manager in the television series.