Welcome, May - glad to have you here. Some of the methods of creating digital maps can be gotten down to just a few hours, so all is not lost, with respect to your scant time. I can't think of a crosstitch map technique that's quick, though :-). A crosstitch pattern is "just" a slightly pixellated picture to "trace", yes? I bet if you devised a map you liked, then reduced it to a fixed palette, say one that just HAPPENED to match the DMC catalog :-)... Then if you rendered it in a very low-resolution format, you'd get all the little squares you need to fill in. I don't know if Gamerprinter here can print on cloth, but he's resourceful - I bet he could find a way :-). Ink that'll wash out, right? Or if you want totally blank canvas, a suitably big paper pattern might do you? I can't be the only one curious - is there a link to the map-stitch kit?
NaNoWriMo? Been there, failed that . One daughter's giving it I think her fifth try this month. For those not in the know - basically a one-month initiative to create a novel (50,000 words being novella, I guess). If you produce that many words, you win - simple as that. "No plot? No Problem." is one motto - goal is SoMeThInG down on paper (screen) that you later can revise. Kudos for even trying over and again - you get marks for persistence. Actually, if you're in Nursing school, it is already a certainty that you know all about stick-to-it-iveness - bravo!
So yeah - lurk all you like, participate when you can. If you're the Standard Poor Student (tm) there's free software that's top-notch, and we have tutorials galore that give you a boost in a wide variety of styles.
So - should we address you as Empress? CEO? She-who-must-be-obeyed (with a syringe in hand, fer pete's sake, not a scepter)?