Graham Greene once entered a magazine competition to parody the style of an author named Green(e). He parodied his own style and came in second. His entry, “The Stranger’s Hand,” was made under the pseudonym M. Wilkinson in the New Statesman‘s Week-end Competition No. 999 in 1949:
The child had an air of taking everything in and giving nothing away. At the Rome airport he was led across the tarmac by his aunt, but he seemed to hear nothing of her advice to himself or of the information she produced for the air hostess. He was too busy with his eyes: the hangars had his attention, every plane on the field except his own — that could wait.
‘My nephew,’ she was saying, ‘yes, that’s him on the list. Roger Court. You will look after him, won’t you? He’s never been quite on his own before,’ but when she made that statement the child’s eyes moved back plane by plane with what looked like contempt, back to the large breasts and the fat legs and the over-responsible mouth: how could she have known, he might have been thinking, when I am alone, how often I am alone?
Remarkably, he pulled the same coup in April 1961 (“I’m sorry but I’ve done it again”) with a fragment of autobiography set in verse; in August 1965 with a parodied biography of Sir Hugh Greene (his brother); and in April 1980 with “an extract from an imaginary novel by Graham Greene.” All but the last won prizes for successfully aping his own style. Not one to let good work go to waste, he developed two of these into legitimate projects, the 1949 entry into a script for a 1954 film and the 1980 effort into the opening of The Captain and the Enemy (1988).
(From Christopher Hawtree, ed., Yours Etc.: Letters to the Press, 1991.)