Simon Gray was born in 1936. He is the author of over thirty plays, including Butley, Otherwise Engaged, The Rear Column, Close of Play, Quartermaine's Terms, The Common Pursuit, Hidden Laughter, The Late Middle Classes, Japes, The Old Masters and Little Nell. He wrote many plays for television and radio, several novels and eight memoirs: An Unnatural Pursuit, How's That for Telling 'Em, Fat Lady?, Fat Chance, Enter a Fox, the Smoking Diaries trilogy - The Smoking Diaries, The Year of the Jouncer and The Last Cigarette - and Coda. Simon Gray was appointed CBE in 2005 for services to drama and literature. He died in 2008.