Not too much graphic novel news out of yesterday’s BEA, although DC/Vertigo announced a couple of graphic novel projects by established authors. Douglas Wolk has a report from the “GN Buzz panel” yesterday, and news of a sequel to Minx title THE PLAIN JANES. Here’s the official PR on the other two:

New York Times #1 bestselling author Peter Straub and screenwriter/poet/actor Michael Easton have been signed by Vertigo, the for mature readers imprint of DC Comics, to co-write their first original graphic novel, THE GREEN WOMAN. The project was announced by Karen Berger, the SVP and Executive Editor of Vertigo during Book Expo America, on June 1, 2007.

Peter Straub is best known for his critically acclaimed horror novels Ghost Story, Koko and The Hellfire Club. THE GREEN WOMAN will not be Straub’s first high profile collaboration; he has co-written two fantasy-horror novels with Stephen King, The Talisman and Black House.

Easton is perhaps best known for his starring role as John McBaine on the daytime show One Life to Live. He is also a member of the Writer’s Guild of America and the author of several screenplays, including Monty. In 1995 Bowry Press published Easton’s book of poetry 18 Straight Whiskeys.

THE GREEN WOMAN is a graphic novel of horror and unrelenting suspense that takes readers deep into the minds of both a serial killer and the police detective whose mission is to bring this monster to justice.

“When Jonathan Vankin at Vertigo suggested that my friend Michael Easton and I try doing a graphic novel, things fell together pretty quickly,” said Straub. “Our ideas seemed perfect for the graphic novel form, and, both DC/Vertigo’s wonderful history and the great enthusiasm of Jonathan Vankin and Karen Berger made it obviously the right place for our book.”

“To this day, the best graphic novel I ever read is Preacher, and Peter always admired Sandman,” said Easton. “So when Peter and I, in a fit of inspired madness over a few tumblers of Pappy Van Winkle, came up with our idea for The Green Woman, we quickly agreed that Vertigo was the place to turn this thing loose. Bow that we’re here, we feel like we’re home.”

“We’re thrilled to be working with Peter and Michael on this epic psychological horror story,” said Berger. “Their passion for this book is matched by their incredible tale which delves deep into the dark and light dualities that reside in us all.”

Acclaimed novelist Jay Cantor will write his first graphic novel, AARON AND AHMED, for DC Comics and Vertigo. Karen Berger, the Senior Vice President and Executive Editor of Vertigo, announced the project during Book Expo America on Friday, June 1st, 2007.

Jay Cantor is a novelist, a screenwriter, a professor and a literary theorist. His novels, Krazy Kat, The Death of Che Guevara, and Great Neck, have all been New York Times Notable Books of the Year. He has won fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Ingram Merrill Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Guggenheim Foundation, and is a winner of the “genius grant” from the MacArthur Fellowship. As a screenwriter, Cantor has worked with Walt Disney, Columbia, Universal, and HBO.

Cantor’s 1987 novel Krazy Kat re-envisioned George Herriman’s time-honored comic strip characters, placing them against the backdrop of the atomic age. By adapting the strip’s cartoonish two-dimensionality to reflect the contemporary mindset, Cantor deftly crafted a social satire that was both amusing and thoughtful. Krazy Kat has become a classic in its own right, and has received acclaim from The New York Times, The Village Voice, The Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe and many others.

In AARON AND AHMED, a man who loses his wife when her plane collides with a tower of the World Trade Center vows to devote his life to stopping the jihadists. On his quest, he discovers “memes” – self-propagating ideas commonly used in brainwashing – and experiments with turning them against the terrorists. This discovery brings his own free will into question – in a world where the implanting of ideas is used to program the masses, can he remain in control of himself?