If writing A Monk's Tale has taught me anything, it is that Martin Luther's 95 Theses are very hard to explain.
It is even harder if you're explaining the beginning of the Reformation to those who are unfamiliar with Christian theology, Late Medieval History or what exactly was being reformed. Martin Luther's actions on 31st October 1517 mark the beginning of the end of era. And the start of the new era. But if you don't know what era was ending, and what was beginning, it's all rather academic. Literally.
Clearly this didn't stop me from writing the live stage show, A Monk's Tale, although doing all of the above with jokes and songs was one of the biggest writing challenges of my professional career. The show was my idea, and no-one asked me to write it, so I have no-one else to blame but myself.
There is more to be said that the 59 minutes of the show. A lot more. And I plan to say it here, in bitesized chunks on this blog. It is partly a blatant attempt to generate publicity for the show and the forthcoming Audio CD, using the Buzzfeed style lists (pioneered by Martin Luther with his 95 Theses, to be fair. In fact, we could go back to the Lollards and their 12 Conclusions in 1395.) It is also partly a desire to increase general understanding of the beginnings of the Reformation, inspire further study and point people in the direction of further resources.
There will be 59 instalments between now and Reformation Day (31st October). Each will be based around a person, or an object, place or picture in some rough order to help us get our heads around what Luther was talking about in 1517, and shortly afterward, and why and what difference it made at the time - and now.