Thursday, September 5, 2019


Scott Johnston grew up in Manhattan and graduated from college in the 1980s. From there, Wall Street (Salomon Brothers of Liar's Poker fame) and a stint in Hong Kong. On the side, he opened a couple of nightclubs in New York City and wrote popular books on beer drinking and golf betting games. More recently, Johnston shifted gears and co-founded two tech startups. He lives in Westchester with his wife and three children.

Johnston applied the Page 69 Test to his new novel, Campusland, and reported the following:
Page 69:
Lulu Ubers to Manhattan

LULU WAS BACK among her people, here for the big On the Avenue shoot. Because she had no Tuesday classes, she’d taken an Uber (Sheldon’s account) the day before for the two-hour drive to Manhattan and spent the night at home. She hadn’t bothered to call and wasn’t surprised to find Sheldon away. Charlie, the doorman at her building since she was a child, greeted her warmly. “Hello, Miss Lulu. So good to have you home.” She liked to think she had a great relationship with all the doormen.

She arrived in time to meet up with some city friends at Debajo, the club of the moment. They all had fake IDs, even if for a certain crowd, at certain places, it really didn’t matter. Bottle service (Grey Goose) had been five hundred dollars a bottle, and at the moment she couldn’t recall if she’d paid or someone else had paid. Or perhaps she’d just left. Details were a bit hazy, but no matter. Someone paid, she was sure. Pretty sure.

She and her group called themselves the Snap Pack, owing to their habit of documenting their fabulousness on social media. They’d been featured last summer on a blog called the Rich Kids of Instagram. While she knew the site was meant to be mocking, she also knew that people were secretly jealous. One of her friends, Thea von Klaussen, had already launched a clothing line. Being back in the city reminded her that people were moving on while she sat in classes. She was here to play a little catch-up.

It was understood that the Avenue in On the Avenue magazine referred to Park Avenue, specifically between Fifty-ninth and Eighty-sixth Streets, an area
I'm going to say no, this page is not illustrative of the rest of the book. It's the beginning of a side misadventure for one of the principal characters, Lulu Harris. She has blown out of Devon University (where she is a freshman) for a couple of days to advance her social aspirations, which in no way include spending four years at college, even a great one like Devon (think Ivies).

Campusland features a variety of characters as they navigate a somewhat insane year. All have an agenda, particularly Lulu. The novel is very much intended to be an indictment of the extreme political correctness that has gripped our universities like a vice. For a random page to capture the essence of Campusland, you'd have to catch a bit of that.
Learn more about Campusland and follow Scott Johnston on Twitter.

--Marshal Zeringue