I doubt this will be useful for the majority of our members, but after scouring the internet for other folks like me who can't "see" anything, I thought I would put up the process I use in case it helps others someday.

First, let me explain what I mean when I say I can't see. I have zero visual thinking ability. I see nothing in my mind's eye; never, nothing. I can't visualize my mother's face, my front door, a circle, a line. I have a mind's ear instead; my thoughts are a clearly audible dialogue, I always have a song playing on another channel in my head, I remember movie dialogue with annoying acuity. It takes roughly 3 listens for a song to be added to my mental jukebox, which will switch to an appropriate tune at no warning (for instance, I look at a map of NYC and the song New York City by They Might Be Giants starts a continuous loop in my head until I replace it with something else). My creativity is in words, and any artistic ability I have is in the skill (practiced, not innate) of turning those words into instructions for something that ends up looking cool.

So, if you share this condition, or are curious, read on; I've learned after a couple years of practice that this is no bar to making cool maps. The steps below are what I follow for hand-drawing maps, because I find that to be the most difficult (and hence, my favorite).