She applied the Page 69 Test to How to Eat a Cupcake, her first novel, and reported the following:
Page 69 of How to Eat a Cupcake finds Annie walking through the tony Pacific Heights neighborhood of San Francisco. For only the second time in a decade, she's headed back to the St. Clair's enormous home--the home where she grew up as the daughter of Lucia, the St. Clair's nanny and cook. She has a complicated, difficult relationship with this neighborhood, and with the St. Clair's daughter, Julia.Learn more about the book and author at Meg Donohue's website and blog.
Mom had loved living on this block. The views, the magnificent homes, the well-dressed neighbors, the suburb-within-a-city feel never lost their luster for her. Everything remained new and sparkly and surreal for her, but as I grew older, I began to realize just how much was lost in translation. Where Mom saw glamour and beauty, goodwill and gaiety, I saw bulimic fourteen-year-olds and a perilous social ladder littered with casualties and boys who already behaved as if they owned, had somehow earned, the world.The descriptions on this page are a good representation of how I tried to make San Francisco come alive in the novel. I thought of the city almost more as another character than as a backdrop, and I think page 69 shows that. However, there's no dialogue on this page, which is rare for the book, and it has a slower, more ruminative quality than much of the novel. Also, there's no humor on this page! Especially for a chapter in Annie's voice, which is sharp-tongued and sarcastic, this is an anomaly. Still, you do get a strong sense of place, a hint of suspense, and a developing understanding of the relationships between these characters and how they changed over time.