Photo of Karen outside, holding up a black Lane Library tote bag with the text "Because the best evidence can be hard to find"

Meet Your Lane Library Staff: Karen Selden

Every month, we are spotlighting an amazing member of our library staff. This month meet Karen Selden, Special Projects Cataloger.

What do you do at the library?

I work directly with Metadata Librarian Salma Berrada El Azizi to perform any special cataloging projects. I work part-time and entirely remotely from my home in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, so my main focus is on copy cataloging ebooks as well as updating other metadata in Lane’s catalog. Since Lane’s migration to FOLIO, I also test new workflows, as well as report and sometimes troubleshoot the FOLIO Inventory or LaneSearch display abnormalities I encounter.  

What did you do before coming to Lane Library?

I was the Metadata Services Librarian at the University of Colorado’s William A. Wise Law Library for nearly 25 years when I fully retired in October 2022. My last year at the law library was spent working part-time and remotely, so I feel fortunate I found another very similar job at Lane. As much as I enjoy retirement, I’m excited to keep my metadata and cataloging skills sharp as part of the Lane RM team. 

What is the most rewarding (or favorite) part of your job?

I’m a detail-oriented metadata nerd (😄), so I love copy cataloging and any other detailed cataloging work, especially using MARC. I’m also a problem solver at heart, so I like to brainstorm and troubleshoot, which is a great fit for testing FOLIO.

How long have you worked at Lane?

I started working at Lane at the end of May 2023, and my contract was recently renewed until the end of January 2024.

What do you do in your spare time?

In true librarian fashion, I love to read, and am currently in 2 book groups. The books I’m reading for my October meetings are the original Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley (for a Halloween theme), and Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe, by Benjamin Alire Saenz, for an author talk at the local community college. I also participate in a lot of outdoor activities here in the beautiful mountains of northern Colorado, including running (on both roads and trails), hiking, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing. I also like to make handmade greeting cards for family and friends, including my new second grade pen pal, whom I was paired with as part of a program at a local elementary school. 

Do you prefer . . .

Coffee or tea?  Tea. My husband is an early riser, so he makes tea for both of us each morning before I even get out of bed.

Cats or dogs?  Cats. Ironically, I’m married to a “dog person,” (he’s actually allergic to cats), so we are a petless home.

Candy or cake? Candy, but especially chocolate. 😀

Salty or sweet?  Salty, despite being a chocolate lover. Not surprisingly, chocolate bars that contain nuts are my favorite. 

Print or digital books? Print, hands down. And if I can borrow a book from the local library, all the better, since I rarely keep books. If I do buy one because the waiting list is too long at the library, I usually pass it on to a friend.

Nonfiction or fiction? Fiction, although I love my book groups because they introduce me to a wide variety of books, including non-fiction, that I wouldn’t have picked up on my own. Braiding Sweetgrass, by Robin Wall Kimmerer, comes immediately to mind; that’s a book I bought and won’t be giving away (but I’m happy to lend it). 😀

Summer or winter? Summer. It can be very difficult to get out and about in the winter with all the snow and ice in the mountains. However, I’m fortunate my husband doesn’t mind doing the shoveling and using the snow thrower, as well as being the primary driver in the winter months. But truth be told, my very favorite season is the fall, because of the temperate weather and beautiful foliage.

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