Something different or special is in the text you’re writing — so important or different that it warrants a little flash. Maybe it’s a newspaper name or an article or song title.
A. Underline it?
B. Italicize it? Wait, isn’t that the same thing as underlining?
C. Put quotation marks around it? Or is that only when someone actually says something out loud?
D. Italicize it, underline it, bold it and put quotations around it? “Then it will really stand out!”
To answer this, it depends on what is important and/or different about the word or words in question. For this, we turn directly to the Associated Press Stylebook:
Use quotation marks around the titles of books, songs, television shows, computer games, poems, lectures, speeches and works of art. Examples: Author Porter Shreve read from his new book, “When the White House Was Ours.” They sang “The Star-Spangled Banner” before the game.
Do not use quotations around the names of magazine, newspapers, the Bible or books that are catalogs of reference materials. Examples: The Washington Post first reported the story. He reads the Bible every morning.
Do not underline or italicize any of the above — if you’re following AP style. You are always welcome to create your own in-house style guide to address issues like these. Consistency and reader understanding are the ultimate goals. — By Sarah Muench