Roz Kaveney (rozk) wrote,
Roz Kaveney

The Saddest of all Sad News

My friend Abigail Frost was found dead this afternoon in her flat. Apparently she had died in her sleep, either last night or the night before, possibly from complications of her cancer or possibly from side effects of her medication. I spoke to her only a few days ago - on Monday.

I am too devastated to say very much at this point, or possibly ever. I had known her since about 1971 and had been pretty close friends all of that time - and more than friends for a while, just before I transitioned - which was a fairly bad idea in retrospect. Abigail and I did not always treat each other well, but we managed to get past that. Not all of the people in her life managed that - she hurt some of her male lovers quite badly and others broke her.

The world is not kind to intelligent, talented women without a clear sense of direction - she wrote some brilliant journalism about ceramics and textiles, and a lot of very funny fan-writing in zines, but she never found out what she wanted to do. She never acquired any internet skills and never got involved in the on-line culture that ought to have been her natural home. Similarly, she never found a project that engaged her enough to dedicate herself to it - constituency politics a little, perhaps, but New Labour broke her heart a little and the ousting of Oona King by George Galloway a little more, much as she hated the war.

You should all have known her at her best, jabbing away with a perpetual cigarette, cracking wise as if she was at the Algonquin, slightly tipsy and slightly out of control and combining her part-Italian heritage with a very English dryness.

But it was not a story that was going to end well, I guess, and it could have been worse than it was. Thin consolation, though.

She was 57 and I really hoped to know her for another thirty years.
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I am so sorry for your loss.
Shocking news. I wouldn't regard Abi and myself as close, and we had deep issues from events 13 years ago, but this remains a sad end for someone with obvious talent and very loyal friends.
Events 13 years ago? Well, that was a story a deal more complex than many people seem to realize, and is best left out of this discussion.


10 years ago

I also knew Abigail, I got to know her through constituency politics about 1991. We lived in the same street. She knew me through my transition and was one of the people who helped a great deal when the press turned up on my doorstep.

I really don't know what to say.
I'm very sorry to hear this. I admired her writing, and her astonishing wit, hugely. I suppose I did know her at her best; I remember her from about twenty years ago. Exactly as you describe, smoking away while delighting people with a stream of hilarious, spiky comments. I do think it's a shame that she never returned to fandom, and I don't suppose she adapted well to a world where you cannot smoke in pubs.
My memory is always going to be of the way she danced, how she followed the music but still seemed to be hearing a tune that no-one else heard. Damn.
Roz, I'm so sorry: I have fond memories of Abi from Eastercons and the Tun (and, I think, a prom or two!), and I missed her when she withdrew from fandom. She was smart and funny and wry and the world is a poorer place for her loss.
I'm so sorry. I remember enjoying reading her pieces in fanzines and appreciating her presence at ReinCONation during her TAFF trip.
I'm very sorry for your loss, and quite shocked to hear this. When I was told in the pub last night (by someone reading this LJ) I had to ask to check what I'd just heard as I couldn't quite believe it.
Oh Roz. I am so sorry.
I'm so sorry for your loss Roz.
Very sorry to hear this. I have good memories of the enthusiasm with which Abigail would throw herself into splendidly silly projects -- like the McGonagall Ode to the Scottish Convention ( back in 1994, where she not only came up with the idea but wrote all the best bits. Another sad goodbye. Damn.
Very sorry to hear this. Condolences to you and everyone close to Abi.
I'm so sorry to hear about her loss, and yours.
Really sorry to hear this. I never met her, but I remember you talking about her on several occasions and making clear what an extraordinary person she was.
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