Manually adding a non-Zotero reference

Is it possible to add a reference in a footnote simply ask text that is not part of a Zotero library? Here's a workflow a user is trying to achieve:

1. Add various references as Chicago Style notes in a document, citing from Zotero.
2. Manually copy/pasting a reference from someplace else for a dictionary, since she doesn't want to bother putting the dictionary in question into Zotero.

I tested this, and as expected, a refresh of the document deletes the manually added item from the footnotes.

My suggestion is just to tell her that she needs to put the dictionary in Zotero, but if there's a workaround you'd recommend, that would be very helpful!
  • edited January 19, 2023
    I tested this, and as expected, a refresh of the document deletes the manually added item from the footnotes.
    Not sure how exactly you tested, but generally this just works -- Zotero doesn't touch footnotes it doesn't create itself and it's perfectly safe to mix Zotero-created with other footnotes (be they with references or just discursive).
    What doesn't work is adding content to a Zotero-generated footnote. That will indeed get overwritten on update. The only way to do that would be in a suffix or prefix.

    edit: I assume this is obvious, but the dictionary wouldn't appear in the bibliography, but CMoS says that's usually OK.
  • I tried adding the footnote between other Zotero notes and when I refreshed, the manual note did go away. Essentially this:

    1. Insert citation 1, note 1 appears at the bottom of the page.
    2. Insert note 2, same.
    3. Manually paste dictionary note beneath note 2 at the bottom of the page.
    4. Insert note 3, same as 1 and 2.

    Refreshing didn't remove the manual note, but when I deleted citation 2 in the document, Zotero maybe decided it was part of that note, despite the carriage return in between, and removed it along with note 2.

    Any advice?

    Also, yes, your edit makes total sense and is the behavior I expected.
  • How are you inserting the note? The idea would be that you use the word processor's insert footnote button when you're not inserting a Zotero citation.
    If you need a references without Zotero in a Zotero-created footnote there are two options:
    1. As per the above, use a suffix
    2. Don't insert the footnote using Zotero. Instead, insert the footnote using Word, then insert the Zotero citaiton in the footnote, then manual type the non-Zotero citation.
  • That worked! Sorry, it didn't occur to me to use the word processor's insert footnote capability, since I always use Zotero for this. It's amazing that the footnotes update numbering, even though some come from Zotero and others from Word. I don't know why it works, but it does, so I'll let my researcher know! Thanks for the quick solution.
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