Have you won a competition and want to keep watch on the news headlines for mentions of it? Do you have a particular poet or author you which to keep track of, and not just from their official website?
Do you want to scan the internet for your own name, or website, on a regular basis, just in case?
Using the free Google Alerts service you can set up email alerts that will notify you on a regular basis on the search criteria you specify.
For example, you could set-up an alert for Preston Poets in a couple of clicks.
If you go to: http://www.google.co.uk/alerts you will see 5 boxes that you need to fill in. The first box is the search term, and this works in exactly the same way as a normal Google Search works (put quotes in for an exact phrase, use the plus and minus signs to include and exclude keywords).
In the second box you specify if you want to search the whole internet, or just News headlines. In the third box you set how often you want the alert to come to you (daily, weekly, monthly), in the fourth you specify the number of results you want to see in your email and finally you tell it which email address you want it to send the results to.
The important part is you do not have to have a GMail account, you can send alerts to any email address. There is no login, signup or anything like that required.
To stop receiving alerts each email that is sent to you has a Cancel link in it.
If you ware worried about receiving lots of emails please note you will only receive an email if a search result if found. If no news is published for "Preston Poets", or whatever your search term is, you will not receive an email until a day when it is triggered.
It is a very simple but very useful tool.