jrsimmon has asked for the wisdom of the Perl Monks concerning the following question:

My current project has led me to customize a couple of cpan modules. Now that I've found and changed/fixed the modules to suit my purposes, I've realized I need to do something to prevent future versions of the module from breaking me (I do plan to submit my changes to the module author, once they've been cleaned up a bit).

My only idea so far is to copy the modules in question and create a new package using them. I'm not so sure this is a good idea, though...I wonder if I'd run into conflicts with other modules including the 'real' versions of my edited modules, etc.

So, is there an established method for including user-specific modules rather than modules from the /lib or /site/lib paths? How do you go about tracking/protecting changes you've made to modules installed from cpan?