If I am just writing about philosophy.
Or if I am writing philosophy proper.
It is hard to know.
But there is clearly a difference.
As Deleuze puts it at the beginning of Difference & Repetition: "There is a great difference between writing history of philosophy and writing philosophy. In the one case, we study the arrows or the tools of a great thinker, the trophies and the prey, the continents discovered. In the other case, we trim our own arrows, or gather those which seem to us the finest in order to try to send them in other directions, even if the distance covered is not astronomical but relatively small. We try to speak in our own name only to learn that a proper name designates no more than the outcome of a body of work - in other words, the concepts discovered, on condition that we were able to express these and imbue them with life using all the possibilities of language" (xv).
What am I doing?
Mostly writing about philosophy. Mostly studying the work of others. What else can I do? I am too young. Not yet well read enough.
Sometimes I try to write philosophy on my own.
But my voice is still muddled. Still uncertain and drowned beneath my references.
Someday I'll have a clearer voice of my own.
Someday I'll be a real philosopher, and not just someone who writes about philosophy.