The Neal James Website

                                  Guest Author

Submission Guidelines


As an opportunity for fellow writers to have greater exposure, this section of my website is reserved for those wishing to make a written contribution to its pages.

Each month, a fresh third party will be given the chance to list here a submission of their choice, together with a suitable image for the piece of work. If you are interested send a message via the mailing address below, and we'll go from there.

Content will be scrutinised to ensure that it fits in with the rest of the site's tone and appearance, but every effort will be made to accomodate those wanting to take part.

Submission length is limited to no more than 5,000 words, and a suitable spellchecker should be used to remove errors beforehand. A personal photograph should also be included (no avatars please), together with a brief biography.

Mailing address is:

                                  January 2019

Bridgitte Goosen



I'm Bridgitte Goosen, and few years ago I decided to turn my dream in to reality and start writing. 

I immersed myself in my novels and a hobby became a full time passion.  Not a job, but something that I thrive on.  My novels are contemporary family sagas.  Not only romance, but there is always a little bit of mystery thrown in to the mix. 

My recent novel, Along Came Claire, is in the same genre but lends itself to a small town romance.  I am a true pantzer.  I don’t plot or plan.  My characters seem to come alive and create themselves as I write. 

Some of them you are going to love.  A few of them you might dislike.  But that is the beauty of a family saga.  Everyone fits, and becomes part of a whole.  I am situated near Durban in South Africa. 

These days, I manage a guest house, and look after my elderly mum and her dog, Chloe.  To add to that I have a wild cat who blessed us with five kittens.  Life gets rather hectic at times, but there is always time to write.  Welcome to my world!




 Along Came Claire



Living in a small town, Spencer and Claire were bound to bump in to one another. Their first meeting didn’t go off too well. But in more ways than one it served its purpose. She had her lock-up, and he had another rental. The chemistry seemed to sizzle and pop in the air. And they definitely took notice of each other! As scarce as she was, he knew she had to renew her rental agreement sooner or later. He would have to bide his time and wait.

In his own way, Spencer had it all. His businesses were all thriving enterprises, and his daughter was his world. He hadn’t even had a chance at romance. When he was married, love and romance didn’t seem to feature.

Claire was a no-nonsense military woman. Always in a war zone, there was no time to spend on a relationship. Well, it was something she never considered. Friendship, to her, was important. At heart, she was your typical woman. Cooking, gardening and pottering about at home were important. And when she could, she did.

But life is full of surprises and there definitely was a surprise in store for them!




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Chapter 1


Spencer sat in the kitchen brooding.  Muriel walked through and opened the fridge and slammed it shut.  “Where is the freshly squeezed orange juice?”

“If you would like freshly squeezed orange juice, you need to make it yourself.  I made the last jug.”

She turned around and looked at him in disgust.  “You are so mean!  Don’t you know I am three months pregnant!”

“That is a lousy excuse and you know it.  I think you need to find yourself a job in the meantime.  There is no reason you aren’t out there earning a living like everyone else.  What about telesales?  I am sure you would be good at that.  We are on the main bus route.”

“But I am not everyone else, am I?  I would never step on to a public bus!  How humiliating!  You have more than enough money to look after me.  That building you are renovating—  Are you building a new home for us?  I detest this cottage.  And what about that building just off the road?  I see they are almost done.  When are we moving?”

“We are not moving.  This cottage is our home.  I am renovating the main house so that I can rent it out.  The building on the main road is going to be converted in to a business.”

“Then I definitely don’t need to go out and get a job.  With all these things you are going to rent out we are going to make a lot of money.  Why should I go out and work?  My mother would hate the thought of me working and being pregnant.  I hate this cottage.  I think we should move in to the main house once it is ready.  And what are those other buildings?”

Spencer got up and looked at her.  He knew he had made the biggest mistake of his life when he married Muriel.  The only reason she had hounded him was to get out of the house.  She also seemed to be a money grabber.  Something he hadn’t realized before getting married.  They hadn’t even dated for any length of time.  But she seemed to be rather sweet, and he had fallen for her charms.  He thought being pregnant would make her happy.  But it didn’t.  She had reacted rather badly when she found out she was pregnant. 

After being married only four months she was already three months pregnant.  Spencer looked forward to having his own family.  He wondered how on earth their marriage would survive.  She had turned out to be so mean and vindictive.  Was that the real Muriel showing her true colors?  He got up and walked towards the door.  He hesitated as he reached the door but carried on walking.  Spencer took a slow stroll to the main house and looked around.  He loved the enormous house, and he didn’t really want to rent it out.  But he wanted a happy home.  Without the constant bickering and arguing.  Even if he didn’t rent it out, it was not the right place for Muriel. 

Spencer took a look at the changes he had made.  One thing he always wanted was a scullery which was being added to the side of the kitchen.  It would be a spacious room with lots of cupboards.  It would be ideal for a washing machine, tumble dryer and a dishwasher.  Not that he had a tumble dryer or dishwasher but it was something he could invest in if he wanted.  But the way he felt, he really didn’t feel like investing in anything.  There was nothing wrong with washing dishes by hand for two people. 

He walked over to the building on the main road.  It was in the perfect spot to run as a pub.  With live music it would draw the crowds and could be a money spinner.  Spencer wanted to do so much but he felt down in the dumps and blue.  He couldn’t shake the feeling.  He felt miserable all the time, and he knew exactly what it was that made him feel that way.  Or rather, who.  Spencer walked inside the building and admired every counter and bar stool and walked through to the enormous kitchen. 

The ovens and fridges were the best money could buy.  Even the fryer was a brand new top of the range fryer.  He couldn’t wait to see everything up and running and tasting the first batch of hot fries.  As he walked he sighed.  The excitement had been sapped from his body.  He had been looking forward to getting the business going, to rent out the house, and have the garages that were being built ready to rent out.  He walked out of the pub and walked up the stairs to the home above the pub.  Building a home above the pub was a super decision.  Whoever managed the pub would live upstairs and be on the property.  With access from outside as well as inside the pub.  Every bedroom was spacious.  The windows overlooked the main road.  He looked out and admired the ocean which was a short distance away.  He could smell the ocean and hear the waves as they crashed over the rocks.  As he took in the beautiful sight, he had to draw himself away from the window.  Spencer turned away and walked slap bang in to Muriel who screeched for no reason at all.  “Get out of this building.  Get out of this house.  Get out!” he yelled and pointed towards the door.

“If we are married half of this belongs to me.  I want to live here.  Right here!”

“Get out!”

Muriel slowly walked out of the house and down the stairs to the pub.  She looked at the inside of the pub.  “But why can’t I work here?  Is this going to be a pub?”

“Get out.”

She walked out of the pub and he followed and closed the door and walked back to the cottage.  “Half.  I own half of everything.  Don’t you ever forget that, Spencer Denton!”

“Actually, you are wrong.  Do you remember the prenuptial agreement you signed when we got married?”

“Oh that flew out of the window the moment we got married.”  Spencer shook his head and had to keep his laugh in check.  He didn’t want her to start another argument.  They argued all the time.  As he walked in to the cottage she followed.  “I want what is rightfully mine.”

“Don’t make me cross, Muriel.  I am going down to the fields.  I have things to do.”

“What a waste!  I can’t understand why you have all those workers.  You think they are working in the fields but all they do is stand and chat.  I have seen them with my own two eyes.  That woman, Marie, or something like that.  She is the worst.  All she does all the time is chat.”

Spencer walked out before he retaliated and said something to spur her on.  Yes, Mary, not Marie, did have a lot to say.  She was in charge of a section of the land.  Making sure that the business ticked over and the vegetables reached the market on time. 



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