An old Spectator article about the time Graham Greene entered a contest soliciting parodies of his own work:
The winning entry was sent in under the name of Sebastian Eleigh. Sebastian Eleigh, we have established, was none other than Grahamâ€™s younger brother, Sir Hugh Greene. In third place was a contribution from a certain Katharine Onslow, who, so it turns out, was in fact Grahamâ€™s sister, Mrs Elisabeth Dennys. So the family acquitted itself remarkably well. But what of Graham? We felt sure that he had entered. Our suspicions, for a number of good reasons, came to rest upon an entry under the name of Colin Bates, which, I am afraid, was not included among the five best that we printed. It ran as follows:
â€˜I am a man approaching middle-age, but the only birthday I can distinguish among all the others was my twelfth. It was on that damp misty day in October that I met the Captain for the first time. I remember the wetness of the gravel in the school quad and the blown leaves which made the cloisters by the chapel slippery as I ran to escape from my enemies between one class and the next. I slithered and came to a halt and my pursuers went whistling away, for there in the middle of the quad stood our formidable headmaster talking to a tall man in a bowler hat who carried his walking stick over his shoulder at the slope like a rifle. I had no idea of course who he was or that he had won me the previous night at backgammon from my father.â€™
As a parody, the real thing never works.
Greene used the paragraph as the opening of his last novel, The Captain and the Enemy (1988).
(Link via Brandywine Books.)