How can you get a book in Deseret Book? Into the catalog?
Your publisher or distributor has to do this. Unless you’ve self-published a run-away best seller and people are coming into the stores demanding many, many special order copies of the book (and although rare, I know of a couple of times it’s happened), Deseret Book won’t really talk to individual authors. They may let you come in and talk to them down at HQ, but nothing will really happen beyond that.
LDS publishers and distributors fall into the following loosely defined categories:
- DB takes every title the company publishes/distributes (rare; there may not actually be any in this category anymore)
- DB takes most of the titles the company publishes
- DB reviews the titles from the company on a book by book basis, picking and choosing according to guidelines known only to them
- DB doesn’t know the company exists and you’ll have to hit hard with a good book before they notice you
Also, if you’re a small publisher and/or distributor, DB won’t really take you seriously unless you have multiple titles (around 10) or a foot-in-the-door type of connection with a decision maker who works there.
As to getting in their catalog, it’s frequently by invitation only. We had a few books we tried and tried to get in the catalog with no success. Then we had a book that hit a real niche market and was in high demand. DB then “invited” us to pay lots of money to be in their catalog. After that initial invite, it was easier to get other books in.
If you can get into the catalog, that guarantees your shelf space in the stores and on their website.