About Haddayr Copley-Woods


I am a scifi/fantasy writer, radio commentator, and essayist with pieces and performances in places such as Minnesota Public Radio, Apex, Story Club Minneapolis, Science Fiction & Fantasy, and Best American Erotica.

I write dark fantasy and horror short stories. My radio commentaries, essays, and spoken-word performances cover disability issues, community, queerness, and politics. Most of these are available to watch or read free online and linked above. I also write the advice column “Bitter Butch” at bitterempire.com.

I live with my weird, wonderful, unconventional and sprawling family in Minneapolis.

If you’d like, visit me at Facebook, follow me on Twitter, or email me at haddayr@gmail.com.

The views I express in this blog are purely my own and not that of any entity which may hire my services or employ me.

In which I sob over a car.


Today, I took my old 95 Saturn to Newgate School to donate her.

Yes, ‘her.’

I got in the car, started the engine, and proceeded to sob all the way to the school.

Jan and I bought that Saturn brand new in 1995. She took us across the country and back so many times. She took both of our sons home from the hospital after they were born. She took me and my old, dearly departed Shepherd Frodo across the country as well in one of my most happy trips ever. She took my Granddad to see the Mississippi on his last visit to Minneapolis, where he admired my driving skill with a stick shift. She made me look good.

She took us to the hospital when we were hurting, and our kids to school when they needed a ride. She took us camping and to concerts and on visits and to work.

She can’t reach highway speeds anymore; she spews terrible blue smoke into my neighbor’s lungs when I drive her. Half of her muffler is missing. Her clutch is going; her shocks are shot.

I walked into the office, eyes red, sniffling. “I have a car to dona-blaaaaawwwwwwhrrrrrghte” I said, and they pulled out the paperwork and looked at me compassionately.

“Do other people cry?” I asked.

“Oh, yes,” she said. “Sometimes they do. Sometimes they kick the car as they leave. Everyone’s different.” She patted the key reassuringly.

So much emotion over this dear old car.

I signed things, and I cried some more, and a delivery guy sort of laughed with me about it, and then I went out to her and took my bicycle out, gave her a furtive little kiss on the corner of the trunk, and biked off to work.

She sat in the parking lot all alone.

Goodbye, little Saturn. You done good.


Dear Bitter Butch: Should I Admit My Celebrity Crush?


Dear Bitter Butch

I have a huge crush on a celebrity. He is simply the most beautiful man I’ve ever laid on eyes on. And I’d like to send him a fan e-mail/message, just saying I think he’s very attractive, nothing more, but there are two problems. First, he’s not a huge celebrity, so there’s a decent chance he’ll interact with my message and/or me online. Second, he’s straight and I’m gay. Read more . . .

Read the rest of the letter and my answer at bitterempire.com.

Dear Bitter Butch: How Do I Thank Someone For an Offensive Gift?


. . . It was a Christian/Inspirational autobiography by a woman with polio, all about how turning her life over to Jesus helped her overcome her depression and the tragedy of her affliction.

Not only had I never thought of my cerebral palsy as a tragic affliction, at the time, I was a budding Neo-Pagan witch. Mostly, though, it hurt — because it was obvious that this woman wasn’t remembering me, at all — she’d never taken the time to know me in the first place. For a dozen years, she’d been obsessing over her own fears of disability and soaking them in pity. And that book just proved it.

Still, my mother insisted I write this woman a “Thank you” letter, because it was a gift, and the woman meant well, and that’s the gracious thing to do. . .

Read the full letter and my response at BitterEmpire.com.

Strange Hobbies

minnesota-state-fairDo you enjoy stepping directly in the path of a person in a wheelchair and then just sort of standing there vaguely?
Or maybe do think there’s nothing better than walking at a smooth pace and then suddenly stopping for no discernible reason, no matter who is behind you?
How about walking straight ahead while looking off sharply over your left shoulder directly into the path of an oncoming wheelchair?
You should go to the #mnstatefair. Your people are waiting for you.

Dear Bitter Butch: How Do I Let Him Down Gently Without Breaking His Heart?


In which I tell a woman to RUN RUN RUN from an infatuated Internet admirer.

Dear Bitter Butch,

I am newly single, and have just started playing the online dating game. So far, I’ve been having a blast. I love dating in my 40s, as I am older and wiser, and can weed out the drama so much better than when I was in my 20s.

I’ve been talking to several guys, and I’m actually making connections with some of them. Overall, it’s been a great experience. But I have one guy that I’m just not sure what to do with, and I’m looking for feedback.

Puppylove (my nickname for him) is completely infatuated with me. He’s 46, military, and from what I can tell, is the sweetest guy in the world. There is nothing that he says that I don’t think is genuine. But, he feels a chemistry that I don’t . . . 

Read the rest of the letter and my answer at bitterempire.com.

Dear Bitter Butch: How Do I Deal With My Beyond Difficult Ex?


Dear Bitter Butch,

I spent eight terrible years in a relationship with a crazy person. I mean she is certifiably batshit crazy. (I was in a bad place, what can I say?) We’ve been apart for four years now. I have a wonderful new partner who is perfectly sane. I often get threatening texts from the crazy ex-girlfriend. She even texted my new gal a few times. It’s very upsetting for me. I have a child with this crazy person, so I can’t make a total break from her, no matter how much I want to. Do you have any advice on how to deal with my crazy bitch ex?

– Baffled Boi

Dear Baffled Boi,

You don’t sound baffled to me.

You sound really, really, really angry. Read the rest at bitterempire.com.

Local State Rep PEGGY FLANAGAN is first Native woman to speak at the DNC!!!

“Your name is NOT Pocahantas. . . . despite everything that has happened to our people, and no matter what Donald Trump says: WE ARE STILL HERE.”



Oh, Peggy I am so damn proud of you and your writing and your speaking and your hard work for all of us. I am so proud to know you.