I was having a lot of trouble just getting my site to generate an authors file, even though I’m the only author here. The pelican documentation says you can add something like

AUTHORS_URL = 'blog/authors.html'
AUTHORS_SAVE_AS = 'blog/authors.html'

To generate the authors.html file.

It wasn’t working for me. Well, after going through the source code and finding the relevant section in generators.py I found that you have to set DIRECT_TEMPLATES like so:

DIRECT_TEMPLATES = ('index', 'tags', 'categories', 'archives', 'authors')
AUTHORS_URL = 'blog/authors.html'
AUTHORS_SAVE_AS = 'blog/authors.html'

Now it works! And looking back at the documentation, it actually sort of hints at this. D’oh!