Yeah, that's right. I name-check the title in the final line. Sue me.
"Leftover Soup", of course, is a name with a double meaning. Is it soup that's left over, or is it soup you make from leftovers? And the answer, of course, is that it's both. The answer is also that it's a metaphor for life, that each of us is an impartial dish - a chunk of beef, a partially-cooked potato - and we may have been one thing in one context, but we can also come together to become something new in some new context.
...I guess the metaphor's not all that great, since leftover soup eventually gets eaten or goes bad, but you get the idea.
The word "existential" gets misused a lot. People tend to think it just means "deeply philosophical" or "thinking about the Matrix". The actual idea of existentialism goes a little something like this:
Let's say a person is like a tool. In order to determine how to best use a tool, one must first determine the essence of that tool, what the tool is meant to be. If the tool was created to be a hammer, then you use it to pound in nails. If the tool was created to be a screwdriver, then you use it to turn screws. Essence comes first, then you use that to define existence.
Existentialism says that it's the other way around. Existence comes first, and you can then use that to define essence. You have the fact of your own existence, first and foremost, and, depending on how that shakes out, you can choose what you want to be. You can chooseto pound in nails and, thereby, become a hammer (even if you may have originally been forged to be something else). You exist first, then you choose what to exist as.
So what is anything? What is that soup in the back of your fridge? What are you?
It's all whatever you choose for it to be.
And as long as you can have a purpose - whether that purpose is teaching someone about culture or learning how to cook or making a board game or raising a child or making a Youtube series or watching the sunset - as long as you have something left on your to-do list, you have a reason to keep going.
Me? I make comics. Of course, much like a reason-to-live RAID, I have plenty of other things I do as well, plenty of other plates I have to keep spinning. I'm glad you're all along for the ride.
Exactly 1000 comics, 4000 panels, 50 days in strip time, 6 years, 5 months and 18 days in real time - with no missed updates, thankyouverymuch. A project completed.
So what comes next?
Well, I'd love to launch right into the next comic, but, quite frankly, it isn't ready yet. I need to write scripts and draw a backlog of strips and design a website and all that. I'm choosing to be optimistic and aiming for.... let's say start of Q3.
In the meantime, you can follow me on Twitter or check out my Patreon page, I plan on at least putting out weekly status updates, letting you know how things are going. Other than the next comic, I'm still working on the next book in the "Guide" series (the Rogue's Guide to Life!) and I still do the art for Roll To Save, and I still take commissions that I'll be posting to either my Furaffinity account or to tailsteak.com (which I am also planning on overhauling soon).
Also! I'm starting a podcast with my brother Luke! It's called "Hey, I've Got An Idea", and, if all goes well, you should be able to go listen to the first five episodes right now.
And don't delete your browser bookmark for leftoversoup.com just yet! I'm also going to be posting single-panel vignettes here every Monday - a semi-canonical time-skipping epilogue, if you will - until the next comic is ready to go. If you wanted to see how Ellen and Jamie's relationship progresses, or how Nicole and John's baby looks, or if Gina ever finds love, then you'll want to stick around.
I'll see you in the future.