But there's no reason a canonical work can't pick and choose elements from non-canonical tie-ins, like the way Enterprise borrowed bits of Andorian worldbuilding from a gaming supplement, or the way the movies have canonized the novel-originated first names of Sulu, Uhura, and Kirk's parents.
Yeah, that's always cool when they do that. It's a nice way, among other things, to show respect towards people who have put serious time, effort and creativity into the franchise.
Do they ever have to deal with royalties with that kind of stuff? I know that Tom Paris was originally gonna be Nick Locarno, but the idea was dropped, possibly because of the downsides of having to pay royalties to the writer of "The First Duty," but how do novels fit into that paradigm, particularly if more than one author has used the idea (ie. Uhura's first name)?