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[emacs-humanities] Citations in org-mode

From: Greg Bognar
Subject: [emacs-humanities] Citations in org-mode
Date: Tue, 09 Feb 2021 00:31:09 +0100


I've done most of my academic writing in LaTeX (and Libreoffice, when I couldn't
avoid Word).  Now I'm starting a new book project, and I'd like to do it in org.
I like working in org, the book is non-technical so it does not need LaTeX, and
the publisher will expect docx, to which I can convert the source files easily
with the built-in org exporter or pandoc.

The only thing holding me back is the handling of citations.  Ideally, I'd like
to be able just to insert a BibTeX citation, like you do in LaTeX, and let the
conversion do the rest.  (I mean the conversion to docx or odt.)  In a simple
case, a citation would be expanded into a full reference when the file is
converted (in this project, all citations would be in endnotes, without a
separate bibliography).

This is all easy to do in LaTeX, of course.  But strangely, I haven't found
anything useful describing how this could be done in org with docx/odt as the
end result.  I was hoping there would be a script that looks up the reference in
the BiBTeX database, grabs the fields and formats it when the file is written to
docx/odt.  Even if the formatting is not what I want, I could probably tweak it.

But I haven't found anything like this, and what I did find about using BibTeX
with org seems very complicated and does not mention the ability to convert
citations to docx/odt.  I'm reasonably familiar with org and pandoc, but perhaps
haven't looked carefully enough.  Or perhaps the workflow is completely

So: is there a good primer on how to use citations (preferably from BibTeX) in
org?  And, in particular, on how to do it when you need to convert your org file
to docx?

Thanks for any pointers,

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