Q. I can’t get a definite answer on how to punctuate a sentence that starts with “trust me.” For example, “Trust me, you don’t want to do that.” Would this be considered a comma splice? Would it be better to use a period or em dash, or is the comma okay? What about “believe me” or “I swear”?

Q. If you’re replying to someone and want to say thank you, would you write “Thank you John” or “Thank you, John”?

Q. I’m having a difficult time finding a rule that governs afterthoughts. For example: “I told him I would pay my respects another time, if necessary.” Comma before “if”? Seems like there should be.

Q. I am having an argument with our law clerks. I do not believe that a comma is needed when referencing a date range—e.g., “The case was active from November 3, 2021 to November 30, 2022.” My law clerks insist that a comma belongs after 2021 (between the dates), and I say that when a date range is preceded by a preposition, a comma is unnecessary. Can you provide me with a definitive answer? Thank you.

Q. Do you place a comma between a book or article title and the word “by”? For example: “Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen, was published in 1813.” Some editors delete those commas, but to me they make sense. The author’s name often isn’t needed to identify the work, and the pause there feels natural to me. Please guide me with your editorial wisdom.

Q. Hi. I am editing a text and would like to know whether the following sentence should have a comma after the word “so”: “So let’s think about how to understand the chemical diversity of the 20 amino acids.”

Q. Should there be a comma after “also” when it begins a sentence?

Q. An academic friend does not use a space following a comma,as this demonstrates. Is this “acceptable” or common? Certainly I can’t see that usage in CMOS.

Q. In the phrase “today, tomorrow, & always” should the comma before the ampersand be removed?

Q. Is a comma used after “But” or “And” at the beginning of a sentence?