Well, the methodology has changed over time for me, since I first took up pen in 89. At first, poetry was cathartic, the overflow of emotions pent inside, dammed up for so long, until a narrow channel of feelings powered the turbine of creativity. However, it was all about me: feelings, thoughts, complaints, dreams, wants, desires.
Then came a time of thought and construction, patiently sitting for hours on end, pen hovering over the page, waiting for the first cinderblocks of creation, building slowly, with many crossing-outs and rewrites structured poetry.
Next were themes. I'd get in the mood for sonnets, and everything would be a sonnet. Shakespearian, Spensarian, Italian, Alicatian...everything penned was 14 lines, 3 quatrains with a rhymed couplet tying it all together. That was the mold my thoughts poured into, usually penning one within minutes. Other themes came and went as well: haiku, senryu, limerick, narrative ode, free, blank, open, graphical layout...they all had their season in the sun.
Now, after 12 years of writing pretty much constantly, I find it hard to write at all. It seems that I've said all I have to say or that there are no words or thoughts I care to share at the moment...but that's just cynical thinking on my part. I've a new method of writing, which is turning out to be a pain in the keister. I dream poetry. It's all there, the thougths, the images, the lines, the words echoing in my head, rewriting on the fly...but unless I wake up quick enough, can find my glasses, find a pen, find my notebook, find a light (these are 3am thoughts), I lose it. It vanishes like fairy gold upon the morning-shine of consciousness.
Come to think of it, writing now is a lot like Catch-and-Release.
Now, as for the forces which sparks creativity in me....again, it varies. Random thoughts, what ifs, images, snippets of song, a snatch of conversation, coffee, good meal, good sex, boredom, spiritual quickening...there are many variables, which may or may not work. My Muse is flighty, and sometimes forgets to pay her union dues.