Neil Young (© 1976 Mark Estabrook)
Neil Young (© 1976 Mark Estabrook)

DC Comics announced it will publish a graphic novel created by acclaimed musician Neil Young through its Vertigo imprint and also released plans for new graphic novels from Minx, its comics imprint for teenage girls—including a sequel to Cecil Castellucci and Jim Rugg’s The Plain Janes, one of the first Minx titles released this year.

Young will create a graphic novel based on his 2003 album Greendale, which tells the story of Sun Green, a fictional California teen with a growing sense of political activism. Young will collaborate on the book with writer Joshua Dysart (who wrote Make 5 Wishes, Del Rey’s just published original manga commissioned by Avril Lavigne) and artist Sean Murphy. “I met Neil about year ago,” said Vertigo executive editor Karen Berger. “He approached us. He loves comics and he’s been following all the attention for graphic novels that’s going on.” Berger said the book will reflect Young’s activist bent, “much like the rest of his creative work. It’s his baby, and he’ll have a big hand in producing the book and promoting it later on.”

Berger announced the second round of titles to come from Minx, including the imprint’s first sequel, Janes in Love by Castellucci and Rugg, which will follow the Plain Janes, a group of teens who create anonymous art installations. Also among the other Minx books, all coming in 2008, is Token, a first graphic novel by writer Alisa Kwitney, about a nice Jewish girl who gets busted for shoplifting and her subsequent romance with a fellow social misfit, with art by Joelle Jones (12 Reasons Why I Love Her). Emiko Superstar, by novelist and performance artist Mariko Tamaki, illustrated by indie comics legend Steve Rolston, is about a teen babysitter that ends up a star on the local art scene. There’s also Burnout by Rebecca Donner, literary director of New York City’s KGB Bar, with art by Inaki Miranda, about extreme ecological activism. And there’s New York 101, written by Brian Wood (DMZ) and illustrated by Ryan Kelly, about four freshman at a New York City university.

Berger also announced plans for a sequel to another recent Minx release, Clubbing by Andi Watson and Josh Howard, to be called Clubbing in Tokyo; it will feature art by Grazia Lobaccaro and inking by Josh Howard.

Berger said she’s particularly excited by the chance to work with novelists Donner, Kwitney and Tamaki, who are crossing over from the prose world to do their first book-length comics works. “It’s terrific to see that novelists get it,” said Berger. “Writers see the attention that graphic novels are receiving, and it’s great for us to be able to introduce a new set of readers to their voices.”