Summarized by Kent Larsen
'Standing' sales are outstanding
Deseret News 11May00 A1
By Dennis Lythgoe: Deseret News staff writer
SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH -- The strong sales of President Gordon B.
Hinckley's book "Standing for Something: 10 Neglected Virtues That
Will Heal Your Hearts and Homes," are coming principally from LDS
Church members, sales seem to indicate. Random House, which published
the book under its Times Books imprint, says it has now printed more
than 470,000 copies, more than three times what it initially printed,
a clear indication of the unexpected success the title has enjoyed.
"The demand has been strong and steady - a very big number - much
more than we anticipated. It has been a very positive experience,"
said Times Books' Will Weisser, the publicist for the book. And
according to industry sources in Utah, contacted by the Deseret News,
the strong sales seem to be coming mostly from LDS Church members,
and the book is strongest in regions with a significant LDS
According to Deseret Book's Gary Swapp, sales at discount retailer
Walmart have been very strong. "Huge numbers have been sold through
Wal-Mart, most of them through the 10 local stores. . . . 'Standing
for Something' has become the No. 1 book for the Western region of
Wal-Mart. After two weeks, it knocked John Grisham's book, 'The
Brethren,' off the top of the list." Swapp also says that unlike
other popular LDS titles, LDS families are purchasing multiple copies
so that each family member can have their own.
Deseret Book's Sheri Dew, a vice president who is also second
counselor in the LDS Church's General Relief Society Presidency,
believes that the book is important for the image of the LDS Church.
" "It establishes President Hinckley as a legitimate world religious
leader, and while sales are being driven largely by members of the
church, it is also placing the book in the hands of people who are
not members. President Hinckley has always said, 'The purpose of the
gospel is to make bad men good and good men better.' It looks like
this book will contribute to that aim."
But, given the book's strong sales among LDS Church members, it may
also be demonstrating the potential of the LDS market. Given that
most national publishers consider books that sell just 25,000 copies
a success, a book that sells half a million copies is bound to