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Richard Bach Gave Me Determination

Updated on December 4, 2013

Jonathan Livingston Seagull - A Book That Changed Me

Jonathan Livingston Seagull is a book that I'll always remember reading. It was given to me by a friend who had a glimpse into what my life was like growing up with a step-parent that was.... let's just say it wasn't the happiest of childhoods. This book couldn't have come at a better time for me.

Never give up on getting a book published, as this one was rejected by more than one publisher.

This novella was first published in 1970, and by 72 it had hit the top of the New York Times best seller list.

Photo source: featured below.

Self-Help Spiritual Novella - An Inspirational Classic

When I first read this book it made me look at my own life, dreams, ambitions, and desires in a totally different light. It left me with a feeling that I could and would make something out of my life, reach my goals, and hopefully let others know that they could too.

This book is available in hardcover, paperback, eBooks, and in audio books.

Jonathan Livingston Seagull
Jonathan Livingston Seagull

Reach for the stars. If you want to soar like a bird in flight all you need to do is believe. Anything is possible.


Jonathan Livingston Seagull

Have you read this book?

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"Don't believe what your eyes are telling you. All they show is limitation. Look with your understanding. Find out what you already know and you will see the way to fly."

— Richard Bach

Neil Diamond - "Be"

I think Neil Diamond did a wonderful job with the soundtrack for the movie Jonathan Livingston Seagull. Richard Bach ended up suing the film company as he was disgusted in the way it was executed. Some books should be left as books and not made into movies.

What I Got Out Of This Book

Everyone is different and people pick up on different things in books that they read. Like I said above, this book came to me at the perfect time in my life. I was 19 when I read it the first time.

  • When I was a child I was constantly being told by my step mother that I was stupid. Deep down inside I knew this wasn't true, but hearing it over and over does tend to kill any self-confidence one has. Reading this book somehow pushed me to go after what I wanted in life.
  • Just because you cannot draw worth a spit doesn't mean you're not artistic. I've found through my writing, poetry, stained glass, ceramics, and cooking that I AM ARTISTIC.
  • If you want something bad enough, go after it. You may fail at first but keep trying. You'll learn from failing and I truly believe that in order to achieve, we must all fail at some point. Keep at it, you'll surprise yourself.


The next time you see a seagull I hope that you'll think of this book by Richard Bach.          Photo source: Susan Zutautas
The next time you see a seagull I hope that you'll think of this book by Richard Bach. Photo source: Susan Zutautas

What book or books have you read that you found inspirational?

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    • profile image


      3 years ago

      The line of Emily Dickinson's poem that insinuates that peploe who never see.success value it most. This is a true statement in my opinion because peploe peploe who work hard definitely appreciate the success that they achieve because they knew what it took to gain it; therefore, they would never take their achievements for granted like those who have things come easily to them.

    • Susan Zutautas profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Thanks Mary!

    • mbgphoto profile image

      Mary Beth Granger 

      4 years ago from O'Fallon, Missouri, USA

      Great review of a wonderful book.

    • Susan Zutautas profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      @ecogranny: Always nice to see a good book go somewhere where you know it will help someone in someway.

    • ecogranny profile image

      Kathryn Grace 

      4 years ago from San Francisco

      I read this one way back then, and it was on my bookshelf for years and years until a good friend borrowed it, "Just for one week. I promise." Ha! Perhaps she needed it more than I did at that point. I also enjoyed Bach's later book, something about a Reluctant Messiah. I thought he really nailed it with that one.

    • Susan Zutautas profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      @sierradawn lm: He is a great author isn't he :)

    • sierradawn lm profile image

      sierradawn lm 

      4 years ago

      "Be-- as a page that aches for a word on a theme that is timeless" I agree with you that Neil Diamond did a wonderful job on Bach's "Jonathan Livingston Seagull. I found this book inspirational too. I have also read his other books and love them all.

    • Susan Zutautas profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      @MarathonRunning: It is such a great book :)

    • MarathonRunning profile image


      5 years ago from Croatia, Europe

      I find this book very inspirational and motivating too. It's nice to hear that awake good things in you and that raised your confidence and self-appreciation.

      There are many more books that I would name as motivational for me : The Little prince by Exopery, The Metamorphosis by Kafka, The crime and punishment by Dostoevsky...

    • SavioC profile image


      5 years ago

      Yes I read this book when I was in college in the late 80's and it was an amazing book. I am so glad that this book changed you in a way. As I was reading I stopped at the 3 points you wrote on what you got from this book and kept re-reading them again and again. It was as if you wrote them for me . Thanks for that. And yes you are ARTISTIC . Funny people think Art is drawing. Well done.

    • Susan Zutautas profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      @smine27: I hope you like it.

    • smine27 profile image

      Shinichi Mine 

      5 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      Thank you for sharing this book with me. Surprisingly I've never heard of this book so I shall be picking it up soon.

    • SheGetsCreative profile image

      Angela F 

      5 years ago from Seattle, WA

      This one, A New Earth, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Phenomenal Woman and the Four Agreements :)

    • Pat Goltz profile image

      Pat Goltz 

      5 years ago

      The Bible is first and foremost. I also saw the movie of Jonathan Livingston Seagull. I love the music by Neil Diamond (the only album of his I have) and I like to sing along. Too bad real-life seagulls are nothing like Jonathan. But it is a very inspiring book.

    • Scarlettohairy profile image

      Peggy Hazelwood 

      5 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

      Thanks for reminding me about this book. I read it when it first came out and loved it. I don't really remember so thanks for the refresher!

    • kimberlyschimmel profile image

      Kimberly Schimmel, MLS 

      5 years ago from Greensboro, NC

      Thanks for bringing back memories. I read this book when I was in 6th grade, along with Tolkein, Orwell, and other good stuff.

    • Susan Zutautas profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      @SBPI Inc: Thank you for such a beautiful comment.

    • SBPI Inc profile image

      SBPI Inc 

      5 years ago

      You are a wonderful person and you always have been good enough ar you are/were. You also happen to love art and are quite talented, God loves you and always has. Bell you.


    • Susan Zutautas profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      @Diana Wenzel: Many times I've wanted to write to Richard Bach and thank him. I'm sure many people have.

    • Susan Zutautas profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      @Ruthi: I've bought several copies over the years and have ended up passing them onto other people that I've felt could benefit as I did from reading the book.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I am not surprised this book had such a positive meaning for you. I purchased a copy of Jonathan Livingston Seagull when it was first published and it was magical. Still today its magic works wonders, still its truth does fly.

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 

      5 years ago from Colorado

      I was perhaps the same age as you when I first read this book. Loved it. Found it very meaningful. Had a Jonathan Livingston Seagull poster with inspirational quotation up on the wall in my college dorm room. Thankful the book spoke to you as it did. You might not be here creating if you hadn't absorbed the message of this inspirational story in a deeply personal and meaningful way.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      There are many and even one sentence in a book can eventually transforms a part of one's life. This happens when the understanding level goes deep within and makes one realize the truth about it. Once that realization takes place, then one cannot be like he or she was before. The transformation is so total that there's no place for any doubt. I haven't read this book but I just love the way you presented it, especially the quoted one. Thanks a lot dear Susan...:)

    • David Stone1 profile image

      David Stone 

      5 years ago from New York City

      Many, many, several by Deepak Chopra who wisely combines science with spirituality.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Too many books to list here but the one you recommend sounds wonderful, and yes you are very creative and artistic!


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