The WWP uses the <author> element only to encode the names of people whom the text explicitly cites as authors in the context of a bibliographic reference. We do not use <author> for the names of people whom we know to be authors, or for the names of our own authors, unless they are being cited in a bibliographic context. A bibliographic context means either a footnote referencing a book or quote, a citation in the text accompanying a quotation or a textual reference, a list of sources, or some similar context. Thus:
<quote>...the gigantic white whale had him by the leg... </quote>
<bibl> <title>Moby-Dick, or, The Whale</title>
<p>I spoke to my friend <persName key="hmelville.qqf">Melville</persName> the other day. </p>
Similarly, even in the case of letters, where the name of the author will appear at the bottom of each letter, that name should be encoded with <persName>, since the letter is not citing the name in a bibliographical way.
For the name of the author on a document’s title page, we use <docRole> with a nested <persName> if appropriate.