Almost every sentiment you shared before focusing on the map, I could have written in reference to myself. The parallels at play between our two situations border on the ludicrous.
I made several attempts in the 90's draw draw a map for a story I wanted to write, bit I'm such a perfectionist that it was difficult to find solid ground to stand on. In the end, I acquired some massive sheets of paper, then draw all the various land masses with a rapidograph which happens to be capable of drawing ridiculously thin lines. From there, I found someone with a scanner large enough for the job to scan it, and then dropped it into Photoshop to enhance it.
It's been years since I put more work into it, but this article has me feeling the urge to scratch that itch, once more.