• Debra Palmen

My so-called cruisey lifestyle

Here’s another quickie Newsletter. You know I’m not good at brevity, but I’m improving. So here’s the latest: Boy I've been busy. 2017 hasn't exactly started with a laid-back, cruisey approach to life, but soon that will all change.

The autumn edition of that most excellent magazine Antiques & Collectables for Pleasure & Profit has hit the newsstands, and it features a cover article by me. Yay! It’s my first magazine cover article and I’m delighted to have had my work selected.

The article explores the behind the scenes secrets and scandals during the filming of the Star Wars movies, together with what’s particularly collectable about those movies. Why Oh Why didn’t I collect those dinky Star Wars figurines when they first came out? The originals, by Kenner, are now worth a bloody fortune. And so are almost all of the original posters.

This edition of the magazine also includes a feature article by me on attending the best ever antiques auction at Diss, in Norfolk (UK). If you’ve got my book you’ve already read that chapter, and the article in the mag is an excerpt of the chapter. But yay for another two page feature!

Anyway, if you’re inclined to have a read you can obtain Antiques & Collectables for Pleasure & Profit at all good newsagents, or you can go online at and subscribe to the best antiques magazine in Australia (and New Zealand). In fact, I haven’t found a comparable magazine of this quality in the US, and it totally gives the giant of the industry (BBC Homes & Antiques magazine) a run for its money.

In other news, Collectorama, the big antiques fair at Nambour on the Sunshine Coast, was held last Saturday. And it was good. Not great – which is a pity because I was expecting great. But good. It’s always at least good for us.

It was a horribly humid day and crowd numbers were down by a lot, but we always have a laugh at Collectorama and we’ll be back there on 3 June for sure. I’ve included a bunch of photos here, for those who weren’t able to visit our stand in person.

Meanwhile, our pop-up shop in Eumundi now has less than a week to run, and that’s good because Calypso and I are tired and ready to spend a bit of time sunning ourselves on the verandah. The pop-up shop has been terrific, sales have been excellent, and we are definitely going on another buying trip in September. I haven’t worked out the itinerary yet, but it’s on for sure.

It was tempting to go on a buying trip in March, but this is the year when we’re definitely getting Stage 2 of our house finished – this time we mean it! And that will hopefully start in April, so we couldn’t be away then because absolutely we won’t have work done on the house when we’re not around to supervise it. But yay, a bigger house! At last!

Meanwhile, meanwhile, I’ve done a bit more work on the website. Now you can go to the ‘Shop’ page and under ‘Jewellery’ you’ll see a nice selection of 1930s glass necklaces we bought on the last buying trip. Next task will be to put on a few of the original vintage pictures. I won’t put the entire vintage picture catalogue online because we sell so many I’d be forever having to remove pictures from the website after only just putting them up. But I’ll put a good selection online.

Yes, I know this Newsletter hasn’t turned out to be entirely brief. But I forgot how much news I had.

Right now I’m working on an article for publication in the Antiques & Collectables magazine later this year, which will also be a chapter in a coming (as yet unnamed) book. It's on the History of Fortune Telling, together with what’s collectable about fortune telling paraphernalia. I’m really enjoying writing this because there’s so many funny insights. There’s a 1001 ways to tell your fortune, it turns out, but I find I’m coming down on the side of the skeptics. A bit of research into their practices has quashed any hopes I had that it all might be true. But you can decide for yourself in due course.

Finally, if you've read my book but haven’t yet left a review of it on Amazon, could I ask a favour that you do that? It doesn't have to be long - one line will do. Or you can rabbit on, as I do, which would also be much appreciated (looking at you, Arfa, King of the Rabitters).

You can go to, type in my name in the search field (Debra Palmen, in case you’re wondering who the hell I am and why you’re reading my Newsletter), and my book will appear. Click on its page, and at the bottom of the page you can leave a review.

So far I’m still No. 1 in all three of my categories on Australian Amazon, which I’m thrilled about because I’ve been there since I first published. And nice reviews will keep me there, so thank you for that.

If you’re feeling particularly kindly you could also go to and do the same on the American site? American Amazon and Australian Amazon don’t communicate with each other, so a review on the Australian site doesn’t appear on the American site, and vice versa.

My rankings on American Amazon are within the Top 25 in three categories, which is good because American Amazon is a tougher gig – more books to compete with. So a little push up the rankings of American Amazon will seriously help this poor, struggling writer. Thanks, Luvvies!

So that's the latest. Running the shop, attending a giant antiques fair, website development, magazine article writing, and still plugging away at my next book. Soon I'll be able to sit on the beach while I write a few chapters, and Calypso can return to sleeping on the bed all day. Something for us both to look forward to.

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