I am attempting to create bibtex entries of any sort (especially WWW links) while writing a paper on Emacs without having to get out of the buffer. I would need to know how to create on the fly these generic entries. Any help welcome, thanks!

2 Answers 2


Org-ref has several functions to do this for a doi, or crossref search. There is a function for urls at https://github.com/jkitchin/org-ref/blob/master/org-ref-url-utils.el#L271 that may be what you are looking for.

  • This is fantastic, thanks! What does "dir" stand for that is prompted? Also, how are named the other functions that do the same for DOI or crossbred? Where do I find info about how to edit the template? Thanks. Commented May 13, 2022 at 5:40
  • 1
    These usually prompt you for a bibtex file to save the bibtex entries in. If you have not defined any defaults (see github.com/jkitchin/org-ref#installation). The html function has templates in org-ref-url-bibtex-template and org-ref-url-biblatex-template. yes there are functions for a DOI, and from a crossref search. Commented May 13, 2022 at 20:16

You say "without having to get out of the buffer". This makes me wonder if you have considered and rejected Org capture on the basis that by default you enter a new buffer for confirming each capture. If so, bear in mind that it is possible to avoid this by adding :immediate-finish t at the end of your capture template (or checking the checkbox, if you use customize).

  • I meant, while working on the paper, in a buffer, I don't want to have to move to the bibtext file to add an entry to return to the paper buffer to add it as a citation. Is is clearer now? :) Commented May 13, 2022 at 5:38

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