Peter Craven is a literary critic, journalist and editor. He began an English degree at Monash University, and later, at the age of 27, enrolled to do an MA on James Joyce at the University of Melbourne. While there, he met fellow student Michael Heyward, and they co-founded the literary magazine Scripsi, which ran from 1981 to 1994.
Craven has written about literature for numerous newspapers, including a column in The Australian for most of the 1990s. He has contributed to the Oxford Guide to Contemporary Writing, the Times Literary Supplement and London Review of Books. In addition to his literary criticism, Craven has also published reviews and analysis of opera, film and television. His editorial work has included the annual Best Australian Essays, Best Australian Stories and the Quarterly Essay. (Craven concluded each of these roles in early 2004.) He has also been on the board of Australian Book Review.
In 2002, The Age described Craven as 'a man of letters, a determined mentor and arbiter of taste'.