I did receive an official letter from Barnes and Noble and “Nook” today, thanking me for submitting my three “Do Ask, Do Tell” titles as a “small press”.
The titles are stocked with Lightning Source (a division of Ingram Books). That means the books can be ordered through the stores in a conventional fashion. I won’t deny that many consumers find online sources (either Amazon or the Barnes and Noble site, and on Kindle and Nook) easier today; ordering at physical stores will still common twenty years ago (remember when we even had Borders?)
However, Barnes and Noble says that the buyers are not advance-stocking copies of the book in stores at this time.
I have visited multiple Barnes and Noble and independent stores over the past months. I’ve noticed that, curiously, the independent stores tend to like to stock non-fiction that has long-term recognition in the academic world (often with religious affiliation or spirituality, when it comes to philosophy, or more like specific historical narratives when it comes to current affairs. The Barnes and Noble current affairs counters seem more likely to stock books on specific social issues that seem controversial and partisan (including “gay rights”). These observations give some guidance as to what booksellers think they can sell, and the type of store (chain or independent) does seem to matter.