After 32 years and 1,700 odd strips, Simpsons creator Matt Goening is quitting the comic strip that started it all, Life in Hell. I loved reading it back in my Chicago days when it was in the Reader along with around 250 other papers nationwide. But I have to admit I had no idea he was still doing it. Here's a clip of his goodbye interview he gave to Rolling Stone:
Why pull the plug on Life in Hell now? Did you simply run out of jokes?
It's pretty obvious that I ran out of jokes a couple of decades ago — but that doesn't stop any cartoonist!
Seriously, though, what drove you to keep drawing it week after week for all those years?
When I started doing the comic strip, it was a great forum for all of my creativity. I'd think about the comic strip all week, spend a day drawing it, and then start thinking about the next one. It was my complete and total focus. Then The Simpsons came along to preoccupy me, and I decided to see how long I could keep the comic strip going. Actually, a TV producer sneered at the strip and said, "Why do you bother? Give it up." Because of that, I dug in my heels and kept it going two decades longer than I might have. I also liked the idea of having one slice of my creative output being completely solo, unlike TV animation. It's very satisfying to sit down at a drawing table by yourself and solve a puzzle with a deadline.
Read the rest here.