Today Peter Guzis made some cool new contributions to Perl::Critic. However, both of his new policies required patches to bugs in PPI to function. So I fixed them (thanks to a commit bit from AdamK). And kept going and going. I had fun digging into the PPI source code and fixed about a half-dozen bugs today.
This reminded me of a revelation I had about a year ago: sometimes it's more fun to be a contributor than a maintainer. As a contributor, one has the freedom to pick a small part of a project, learn it and improve it without having to worry about the whole. And then you can put it down and go to work on something else for a while.
So this week for my few precious free hours, I've chosen to work on PPI::Token::Number instead of Perl::Critic itself or on my own modules that need some work (e.g. FLV::Info -- apologies to Christian Donhofer who's waiting on a hard fix in that module!)
Another nice thing about being a contributor is that your energy can be contagious. I've noticed that most every time I commit a patch to PPI, Adam commits a patch or two shortly thereafter. The same holds for submitting patches to RT. Sometimes when I submit RT bugs, the maintainer fixes not only my bug but a couple others at the same time. That makes me feel like my contribution has a multiplier effect. Sweet!