Entirely in the spirit of my creative process, I've procrastinated over answering this question.
Well, rhymes happen. They just happen.
Sometimes they happen in a dizzying rush, like one afternoon in December 2001 when I wrote That Potter Slash - or the intense weekend that resulted in my other Seuss parody, The Guy With the Eye; or the absinthe-fueled evening that produced Hiawatha-parody H/D (alcohol isn't usually part of my creative process, but that rhyme seemed to like it).
More typically, though, I'll tinker with a rhyme-bunny for weeks in the back of my mind, and promising lines will occur to me while I'm washing dishes or something. (My phone has a miscellaneous-rhymes file.) Long songs can be like that; I filked American Pie once, way back when, and it took about a month of jotting down lines here and there. But the Ooo-de-lally Slash filk (Yuletide 2012) was short, and still took a couple of months. The Snape-tribute poem based on e.e. cummings - another short one, done over a month or so.
There's also the HP bunny file, many years old. Some have just one or two lines, some have none, others have lots. Maybe they'll be completed rhymes one day - maybe not.
And when enough notes have been jotted down, or when intense inspiration strikes, it's time to whack the verse into shape - I'll go over the original lyrics, get a midi file and play it on infinite loop, and brainstorm the remaining parts until I've got something that works.
Rhymezone.com helps, but so does staring at the ceiling. (The prose-writing process, on the other hand, calls for periods of staring out of a window. Preferably with a view including trees.)
Coming up with word-combinations and rejecting them as a) not scanning or b) not funny. Sometimes writing out the necessary rhythm/metre with emphasis (da-DA-da-da-DA-da-da-DA) to help me focus, tapping it on the desk, speaking/singing aloud.
And still, sometimes, a final version never quite comes together, I can never get it to a point where I'm happy with it: possibly a weak bunny (the kind of one-joke wonder that's funny in one line but not strong enough to support a whole song), or I fail at thinking up words/rhymes that convey the humorous points I'm aiming at, while also fitting the original work's pattern of rhyme and rhythm.
So things end up back in the bunny file, or in random places all over the HP folder from two computers ago - it's got fandom-related stuff going back to October 2003, notes for my memes/polls/quizzes and so on, as well as fragments of rhymes.
Neville, Neville, dunderhead!
Killed the snake when Snape was dead.
For Merlin's sake, you hero git,
Where were you when Snape got bit?!
And whatever possessed me, in April 2004, to contemplate doing The Walrus and the Carpenter as The Werewolf and the Poltergeist with a Lupin/Peeves pairing? (I really can't remember.)
"The semen of a poltergeist,
He leered and groped the Werewolf's bum,
And said, "That means inside."
Or, in February 2004, to consider filking Be Our Guest as Read Our Smut with Lucius Malfoy as Lumiere and Molly as Mrs Potts? (I bet pornish_pixies had something to do with this bunny.)
Read our smut! Read our smut!
(Look at Snape, he's such a slut!)
See the Potterverse exploding in
A pornographic glut!
Every character in bed
With the Dark Lord -
With my brothers -
And with many, many others!
Or, some years later, Hedwig's AK Lament to the tune of Waltzing Matilda.
Once a Snowy Owl died pointlessly in Chapter Four,
Strongly displeased about ceasing to be.
So she turned with a hoot to interrogate the narrative:
Who cast Avada Kedavra on me?
Or the HP/Rocky Horror crossover that's still bubbling away in the back of my head and producing occasional notes.
It's on the arm on your left,
Not the one on your right.
It's a skull and a snake,
Oh what a scary sight!
And when the Dark Lord calls
It leaves you writhing in pa-a-a-a-aiin!
Let's do the Dark Mark again!
These days, the HP bunny file has made way for the multifandom Notes folder, full of fic/vid/rhyme thoughts and outlines. Whenever I have the time and energy, that folder grows.
Crossposted from McTabby@DW.