Q. When the appositive rule (commas setting off a nonrestrictive appositive) bumps up against the rule that says a question mark shouldn’t be directly followed by a comma, which rule prevails? Here’s the sentence: The album’s first single “Do You Realize??” features a lush arrangement. Is it better to set off “Do You Realize??” with commas? Leave out the commas? Recast the sentence (which is what I wound up doing)? Thanks for your thoughts.
A. The sixteenth edition of CMOS recommends using a comma even after a question mark if it would normally be required (6.119). End of dilemma: The album’s first single, “Do You Realize??,” features a lush arrangement. Of course, if you find that punctuation clump ugly, you’re free to recast the sentence.