The Bendigo Writers Festival has wrapped up after an "extraordinary" weekend.
Festival director Rosemary Sorensen said the weekend exceeded expectations.
"We have exceeded what we expected in terms of the numbers, the ticket sales and certainly the quality of what we were presenting, we are very pleased," she said.
Ms Sorensen said bookings had been steady for weeks leading up to the festival with many sessions full.
"We are very pleased, in terms of the audience over the weekend it was very good and all of the rooms were looking full," she said.
"We know we were operating in a different kind of space and we didn't know what to expect and certainly it's been as good as we could have hoped.
"Everyone one immediately got on board and the feedback which is at the moment the most important thing for me. We had people saying 'thank goodness your back', 'well done with putting together a program in difficult circumstances' and 'well done to adapting to having online as well as in person'.
"This was just so good for Bendigo."
The festival featured a mix of livestream and in person talks, something Ms Sorensen said went very smoothly.
"It was done really well, the couple of glitches that we had were only minor and nothing happened that stopped a session from going ahead," she said.
"We had terrific technicians and venues that made sure that we could go ahead.
"The key was having a live audience and always a live host in the room and that changes everything, that made it very good and it felt like we were talking to our guests internationally.
"It's a step forward and it wasn't like you dry Zoom call, these sessions were a live audience and live studio event and it worked better than we imagined."
Authors livestreaming to the festival included the world-renowned Shakespeare expert Stephen Greenblatt and Amitav Ghosh, a writer who works between India and the United States.
In-person authors included commentator Don Watson, journalist Louise Milligan, and actor Samuel Johnson, who was stage with his sister Hilde Hinton to talk about the campaign to raise funds in honour of his sister who died from breast cancer.
One highlight for Ms Sorensen was seeing Mr Greenblatt speak.
"For me personally was watching Stephen Greenblatt, the Shakespeare scholar, the most respected and wonderful Shakespeare scholar in the world speak," she said.
'He teamed him up with Stuart Kells who is from Melbourne and who is a La Trobe academic and to have those two people talking in a room in Bendigo for me, that made my life really... it was just so good."
"In saying that, everyone has just spoken so wonderfully well and hearing people speak was beautiful."
Mr Sorensen said she looks forward to what the next festival will bring.
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