It's impossible to judge whether what Q does is 'real' or not. Even the Q Who encounter that seems pretty much real, doesn't necessarily have to be so, not even when only considering TNG material. I believe the implication of the Neutral Zone was meant to be that it was Borg who took those colonies - a season before Q Who so the Borg were knocking on the door on their own account already. Given that we can't determine if Q "really" affects time and space or not in any conceivable way, the question is irrelevant, in a sense. (But of course still fun to discuss).