Re: comma inside quoted-string-with-question-mark ?

Subject: Re: comma inside quoted-string-with-question-mark ?
From: Lauren <lauren -at- writeco -dot- net>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 2012 14:52:53 -0800

On 1/12/2012 2:25 PM, Monique Semp wrote:

The next section, âsection-name,â explains how to...

The problem is, the section-name ends with a question mark:

âWhat is<concept>?â

You can leave off the comma after the question mark. Apparently, this situation has spawned a few discussions online and some of them seem absurd, like putting the comma outside of the closing quotation mark. For people who use the convention of punctuation outside of a closing quote that may not seem so odd.

One useful discussion is here,

And so I canât figure out how to deal with having a question mark and a comma adjacent within the quote marks! Iâve consulted Chicago (15th ed.), and read lots about commas and quotes, but canât find this specific situation. Any suggestions as to how it should be done?

Iâm actually going to just reword it because I realized that in the given context itâs better to reverse the explanation and reference anyway:

To learn how to<blah-blah-blah>, see âWhat is<concept>?â on page<page-num>.

Unfortunately, you need a comma after "see," so you would still have the parenthetical conundrum you are trying to resolve if you choose to not use the page reference.

But Iâd still like to solve the puzzle!

Options follow beginning with your initial example.

* The next section, âWhat is <concept>?â explains how to...
* âWhat is <concept>?â explains how to <...> in the next section.
* Learn how to <...> in the section âWhat is <concept>?â (A bit of a
similar issue arises with the closing punctuation here.)


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comma inside quoted-string-with-question-mark ?: From: Monique Semp

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